About Varicose Veins
Varicose veins can develop through a combination of weakened vein walls and faulty valves. Vein walls can become weak and allow the recirculating blood that should be moving toward your heart to flow backward. One-way valves in these veins – which open and then close to stop blood from flowing backward – can also fail to function properly. This allows blood to pool and pressure to build up, which further weakens and subsequently damages the veins, causing them to become twisted, enlarged, and painful. Up to 40% of women and 25% of men are affected by this condition – but fortunately, treatment is available.
The entire procedure typically lasts anywhere from 45 minutes to one hour, and requires only a local anesthetic. Your physician will insert a thin laser fiber into the vein through a very small entry point, and the laser light that emits through this fiber will seal the faulty vein. While you might feel an unfamiliar sensation, it is not painful. This part of the procedure takes literally just a few minutes. Your physician will encourage you to walk immediately after the procedure, and you can resume normal activity the same day (ask your physician when it is safe to resume rigorous activities). Some patients may experience temporary soreness, which can be treated effectively with over-the-counter, non-aspirin pain relievers and should subside within the first five days.
After treatment, the appearance of the abnormal vein is instantly improved with minimal to no scarring. There may be some slight swelling and minimal bruising around the treatment site. However, once that subsides, you will see a significant difference in the appearance of your legs. For those patients who don’t experience these small side effects, the results are obvious right away. Veins that have been treated are very unlikely to become varicose again. Many people experience other vein conditions that may need to be treated with additional procedures such as microphlebectomy and sclerotherapy.