Previously, if conservative treatment of varicose veins did not bring the desired results or if complications posed a serious risk to the patient's health, doctors prescribed surgery. In this case, the affected vein was completely removed, and after the operation, scars remained on the skin. Modern medicine allows, in some cases, to replace an outdated operation with more advanced laser therapy.
The essence of the impact is that a laser beam with a certain wavelength is directed at the dilated vein. Blood cells convert the incoming impulse into thermal energy, as a result of which the affected vein is sealed, as it were, and blood begins to circulate through deeper healthy pathways.
At the same time, all adjacent tissues remain unharmed, since the laser beam acts selectively, and the area of the body on which the manipulation was performed does not subsequently cause discomfort due to the disabled vein.
Laser surgery for varicose veins is divided into two types, which are used in different situations. Percutaneous laser correction is used in most cases for the treatment of the venous network, which can be called an initial stage in the development of varicose veins. The procedure is performed without direct contact with the skin and the result is no different from the other type of procedure, but in this case the vein should not exceed 3 mm in diameter.
Intravascular laser coagulation (EVLK) is used more often, in Europe this procedure has become a priority therapeutic method, and the surgical treatment of varicose veins is gradually being relegated to the background. EVLK involves a microscopic skin incision through which a light guide is inserted into the damaged vein. This feature allows you to freely "glue" any dilated vein that does not exceed 1 cm in diameter. The whole process is under the control of ultrasound diagnostics, so the risk of medical error is minimal.
Negative reviews about laser coagulation of the veins are often left by people who trusted an inexperienced doctor or ignored the advice of a specialist.
Indications and contraindications
Any procedure has indications and contraindications, which the attending physician should talk about. In the case of the treatment of varicose veins of the legs with laser coagulation, the specialist must carefully check the prerequisites for the procedure.
First, the vein in the mouth must be expanded by no more than 10 mm, otherwise the therapy will be useless and the problem will soon recur.
Secondly, the vein must have a regular trunk pattern so that the light guide can pass through it freely from start to finish.
Thirdly, there shouldn't be too many varicose veins.
Before starting laser treatment, it is necessary to take into account the existing contraindications to the procedure:
- tendency to thrombophlebitis;
- any chronic diseases in the acute phase;
- pathology of blood circulation;
- venous expansion greater than 1 cm;
- inflammatory processes in the affected area;
- infectious diseases accompanied by high body temperature;
- poor patient mobility for health reasons.
If you ignore the existing contraindications, there may be negative consequences that will be much more difficult to eliminate. In order for the procedure to be successful, it is necessary to contact only a specialized medical institution, which employs experienced and responsible specialists.
How is the procedure
In a preliminary consultation with a doctor, the patient answers all necessary questions and undergoes an examination so that the specialist can decide whether laser treatment of varicose veins will help in this case and whether it is necessary. After that, tests are prescribed, and if no contraindications are found, the date of the session is announced.
There is no specialized preparation for laser coagulation, but the patient must follow some specialist recommendations:
- wear loose and comfortable clothes and shoes, especially in the last days before the established date;
- a few days before the procedure, it is necessary to stop taking drugs that affect the viscosity of the blood.
In the first stage, the phlebologist, together with an ultrasound diagnostic specialist, marks and marks the location of the entire part of the vein affected by varicose veins on the affected area of the patient's body. This step can vary in length: if the vein is straight and short, the process will only take a few minutes, and if it is often twisted and involved in a long section, the marking may take longer.
The second stage is the use of local anesthesia, which is often used as novocaine, if the patient is not allergic to it. The doctor, under the control of an ultrasound machine, carefully cuts the affected vein without damaging it. This step is very important, because it not only anesthetizes the procedure, but also prevents the laser beam from affecting nearby tissues.
Removal of varicose veins with a laser begins with the phlebologist choosing a suitable irradiation mode for the patient. Subsequently, a small incision is made, through which a light guide is brought into the vein if intravascular coagulation is performed, or the laser acts superficially if the percutaneous method is chosen. With the help of an ultrasound machine, the phlebologist controls the process and moves the source of the laser beam along the entire length of the dilated vein.
After laser treatment of the veins of the lower extremities, you will need to wear compression underwear for two weeks and in the first days after the procedure, not only during the day, but also at night. Furthermore, immediately after the exposure and subsequently for two weeks, it will be necessary to take walks lasting at least 30 minutes.
Consequences of therapy
In most cases, varicose veins in the legs and other parts of the body are prone to laser coagulation without side effects and relapses. At first, the patient may feel discomfort, pain or other discomfort in the affected area, bruises may also appear, but these gradually disappear. Otherwise, you will need the help of a doctor.
If the course of laser treatment of varicose veins on the legs and other parts of the body has been interrupted or the patient has neglected the advice of a specialist, more serious complications can occur. The most harmless of them is the penetration of infection through an open wound, which is treated with antibiotics. A more serious complication is the onset of a superficial or deep vein thrombus, which is only treated surgically.