One of the most effective non-surgical methods of removing and alleviating the discomfort caused by visible veins is a cosmetic laser treatment. Laser vein removal therapy allows you to get rid of the tiny, bluish-purple clusters of veins you can see on your skin’s surface. This laser vein treatment is safe and minimally invasive as it employs laser technology to treat common spider veins and varicose veins by cutting off the blood supply of the injured vein, causing the vein to fade and enhance the skin’s look.
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Vein Therapy at Swetnam Cosmetic Surgery
Dr. Jeffrey Swetnam has extensive training in the vein therapy treatments of varicose and spider veins. Added to this is more than 20 years of experience in the diagnosis and treatment of vascular disease, which allows him to manage most vein issues.
Chronic venous insufficiency is a very common problem. It is thought that up to 50 percent of the adult population is bothered by this disease and as we all age the symptoms become worse. If you are bothered by restless leg syndrome, leg swelling, leg pain, visible varicose veins or ugly spider veins, you may be that person. Many men and women cannot wear summer clothing such as shorts, dresses or swimming suits due the unsightly appearance of their veins.
Modern Treatment Options
Prior to advanced treatment techniques, vein stripping was the usual treatment for vein problems. We now have the ability to treat the problem in a multitude of different ways thanks to vein therapy. The first step is a venous ultrasound. Venous ultrasound is a painless way to evaluate and map the veins. It also allows us to measure function and look for abnormalities. If the veins are significantly abnormal and meet certain requirements, they can be made non-functional using laser technology. This procedure may be done in stages and it is an in-office procedure, done with minimal sedation where patients walk in and walk out of the clinic. There is very little down time.
We also have the ability to eliminate the large, ropey varicose veins that are very unsightly, sometimes bleed and can result in significant discomfort. The procedure is called microphlebectomy and means that these large veins are removed through incisions no larger than the width of the lead in a pencil. The cosmetic result is fantastic, and the symptoms are usually resolved completely.
Laser ablative procedures and microphlebectomy are covered by most insurance companies and Medicare.
More about Vein Treatments
Watch the video to hear Dr. Swetnam explain the difference between the various vein problems and his process for treatment.
Frequently Asked Questions
How did I get these veins?
Spider veins are often purely cosmetic. They look like thin red, blue, or purple threads and are often found on the calves, thighs, and ankles. Spider veins can be caused by “feeder veins” or larger varicose veins under the skin.
Varicose veins are swollen veins that are caused by vein valves that are weak or even broken. Varicose veins and spider veins can be caused by pregnancy, heredity, getting older, standing for long periods of time, lifting heavy things, and changes in hormones.
Will laser vein treatments make me healthier?
Laser vein treatment is a cosmetic procedure that will enhance the look of your skin by removing the appearance of veins. Once your treatment is completed, you should continue to take the necessary precautions to prevent spider and varicose veins from developing. However, there are some additional benefits to this treatment such as pain management, improved mobility, and a boost of confidence. Insurance often covers the procedures because of the health benefits.
What is the treatment process like?
During laser treatment for spider veins, you will be given protective goggles to shield your eyes from the powerful laser light. Next, a cooling gel will be applied to the treated region. As the laser energy is applied to the skin, you will feel a sensation many people equate to a rubber band snapping against the skin. There is no downtime associated with laser vein therapy, but it is common to have irritation and redness in the treated region.
How long is each treatment session?
Depending on how extensive your spider veins and varicose veins are, a basic laser session for vein removal may take anywhere from 30 minutes to an hour. Laser vein therapy has a relatively quick recovery time. While you should rest for a while and avoid activity, you may go back to your regular activities after a day or two.
Who is eligible for laser vein treatment?
The ideal patient is in generally good health, does not smoke, and has reasonable expectations for the cosmetic improvement possible. If you have certain medical problems, are pregnant, have tattoos in the treatment region, or take certain drugs, you may not be a candidate for laser vein treatment.
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We continue to offer complimentary consultation appointments. It couldn’t be easier to start your cosmetic journey!