The D940 laser system treats both spider and varicose veins. The system’s special 940 wavelength targets blood making it ideal for a variety of venous conditions.
Dornier more recently developed a D1470 wavelength venous laser. This has a greater affinity for water than it does blood and in the minimally invasive treatment of venous insufficiency, this laser may have some benefits (less tenderness and bruising) over the 940 wavelength in specific circumstances.
Varicose veins are an embarrassing and often painful condition that affects millions of men and women as a result of heredity, pregnancy and hormones. These affected veins can appear on the leg as a bulging, twisted, and unattractive web under the surface of the skin or simply as leg pain and restlessness. Women are most often affected by this condition and as a result may be embarrassed to wear shorts or show their legs.
While spider and varicose veins have been successfully treated for years through conventional methods such as stripping, ligation and sclerotherapy, these procedures often cause pain and other unwanted symptoms during and after treatment. Laser procedures offer patients more precise results through a minimally invasive procedure, which heats the vein and causes it to close, rather than removing it surgically.
Laser vein treatment offers patients:
- Fewer side effects
- Less trauma
- Shorter treatment time
- Shorter recovery
- Minimal downtime
Procedure for Venous Insufficiency
Treatment with the D940 nm or the D1470 nm laser for venous insufficiency is usually performed under local anesthesia on an outpatient basis. Each treatment session generally takes approximately 30 minutes to perform, and patients can return to work and other normal activities the following day.
Your doctor will use ultrasound to obtain an image of the vein. After making a small incision in your leg, a catheter will be guided into the saphenous vein. The laser fiber is inserted into the catheter, where it provides laser energy to close off the damaged vein. After the laser is removed from the leg, the flow of blood is directed to healthy veins. Once the incision is closed, it will be covered by a small bandage and a compression garment is used to promote healing. Patients are recommended to begin walking immediately after the treatment is complete.
You may experience a slight tingling sensation during the procedure as the laser energy is delivered to the targeted vein. Other patients report a sensation similar to a rubber band being snapped on the leg. The majority of patients are able to tolerate this procedure well with the use of a local anesthetic.
Most patients see effective, long-lasting results from this procedure. However, the number of treatments required varies depending upon the severity of the condition, and patients with larger veins typically require additional sessions.
Recovery and Results
After a laser vein treatment, patients may experience slight redness and bruising in the treated area, and may also notice a slight bump on the skin. These symptoms are usually mild and will go away on their own within a few days. The results of this procedure may be felt right away and will further improve gradually over the next few weeks.
Treatment with the D940 or D1470nm laser is extremely successful in closing affected veins and enhancing the appearance of the legs through a less invasive procedure. More than 95% of patients are satisfied with the results of this procedure, and most results are permanent.
Risks and Complications
Although laser vein treatment is considered a safe treatment, there is always a risk of complication associated with any type of medical or cosmetic procedure. Although rare, these complications may include:
- Blood clotting
- Nerve damage
Patients can minimize these risks by choosing a doctor who is experienced in performing this procedure, and by adhering to their doctor’s instructions for before and after the procedure.