Which veins can be injected?
Small blue and red spider veins and most bulging blue veins can
be treated with injection sclerotherapy. However, very large bulging
veins may indicate a medical problem. If patients have pain,
swelling, night cramps, or skin discoloration/ulceration, they too
can have an underlying medical problem.
What is injected? Is it safe?
The solution is called Sotradecol. It has been used for many
years, and is FDA approved for the indication of sclerotherapy. The
solution is diluted so as to minimize unwanted side effects on the
How does the solution work?
The solution is injected directly into the veins with one of the
smallest needles available. As the solution enters the vein, it
temporarily displaces the blood and causes an irritation of the
inner lining of the vein, such that the vein collapses and is
gradually absorbed by the body.
Is the injection procedure painful?
Some may experience a slight stinging during the injection of the
solution. Most patients report little or no pain. You will feel the
small pinch of the needle as it is inserted.
Will the veins disappear immediately?
No. This is the most important fact in understanding your
treatment. The healing process begins as soon as the solution is
injected. However, in the beginning, the healing process is
microscopic, invisible to the naked eye. The treated veins will fade
over the course of 4 to 6 weeks. Repeat treatments are not scheduled
any sooner than this time frame.
How many treatments will be needed?
This will vary of course, depending on the extent of the
patient’s problem. The national average is 2-5 treatment sessions.
Do I have to stay in bed after the injections?
Definitely not. We want you to continue your normal activities.
Walking is very beneficial because it lowers the venous pressure in
the legs. The only restriction is to avoid heavy aerobic exercise
and swimming for 48 hours after the injections.
Do I have bandages after the injections?
You will have medically prescribed graduated compression
stockings initially post-treatment. The use of these stockings is
very important for increasing the success of the treatment.
Are there any complications to this procedure?
The information given at your initial visit explains possible
side effects, such as discoloration, skin sloughing, matting, and
allergic reactions to the solution. If you have any questions,
please ask the physician or office nurse.
Will I have any pain after the injections?
You may notice some itching or tingling for a few hours after
injection. We recommend Tylenol for discomfort and Benadryl for
itching. Do not scratch areas or apply ointments. Call the office if
you have any significant pain or any other concerns.
EVLT FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS
How does the procedure actually work?
The laser energy damages the vein walls, shrinking them and thus
closing the faulty vein so that the blood can no longer flow through
Is loss of this vein a problem?
No. There are many veins in the leg and after treatment the blood
in the faulty veins will be diverted to normal veins in order to
make its way back to the heart.
What are the complications of this procedure?
There are potential complications with any medical procedure;
however, the only minimal complications experienced with the EVLT™
Procedure have been a small number of cases of transient paresthesia
Am I at risk from the laser?
No. You will be given a pair of special glasses to wear to
protect your eyes; however, this is just a precaution against
accidental firing of laser energy outside the body.
What is the alternative to this treatment?
Traditionally, faulty Saphenous veins have been treated with
surgical ligation and stripping. This involves at least two surgical
incisions in order to tie off and pull out the faulty vein. It is
usually performed under general anesthesia. EVLT™ appears to have
lower risk, shorter recovery period, lower costs and no scarring
compared with surgery.
Are there alternative minimally invasive
Yes. The two common ones are ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy
(injection therapy) and radio frequency electrosurgery. Injection
therapy for the Saphenous vein appears to have a high recurrence
rate frequently requiring retreatment. However, it is excellent for
cosmetic treatment of any visible veins remaining after EVLT™.
Radiofrequency electrosurgery is more limited in the range of
patients it can treat and the treatment time is longer than EVLT™.
How successful is EVLT™?
Early results have been extremely favorable with success rates as
high as the conventional surgical approach, which is accepted as the
"gold standard" treatment. EVLT™ will normally treat the cause of
most vein reflux disease but additional/complimentary therapy may be
necessary in some cases.
Where do I find more information regarding the
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