Varicose veins are a condition that causes enlarged, dilated, and overfilled blood vessels. The disorder usually affects the lower legs causing pain and swelling. Veins have one-way valves that regulate circulation. Varicose veins develop a fault in the valves, the condition inhibits the normal flow of blood in the veins. Potential causes for varicose veins include chronic heart valve conditions, pregnancy, menopause, standing for long periods of time and obesity.
Laser treatment is found to be effective in the treatment of varicose veins. A laser is a high-intensity light that generates heat to seal the affected veins. A closed vein loses its source of blood and dies.
Simple laser treatment is prescribed for spider veins and fine varicose veins just under the skin's surface. Usually, more than one laser session spaced 6 to 12 weeks apart are required. Endovenous laser treatment can treat larger varicose veins in the legs. A laser fiber is passed through a thin tube into the vein. The laser fiber is guided by ultrasound imaging. The procedure is carried out under local anesthesia.
Recovery time for laser treatment is very short. The patient returns to a normal daily routine within 24 hours of the simple laser treatment. However, after endovenous laser treatment, compression stockings are prescribed for 1 week or more. Side effects of laser treatment, in rare cases, include skin burns, burning sensation, pain, or prickling and blood clots in the vein. The treatment should be undertaken by a well-trained surgeon.
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