Endovenous laser treatment (ELT, or sometimes referred to as EVLT) is a quick, minimally invasive laser treatment that requires no hospitalization and no complicated surgery.
The entire procedure, from start to finish, takes about an hour and there is very little to no pain. Another advantage of treating varicose veins with endovenous laser treatment is that most insurance plans and Medicare cover it.
With ELT, a small optic fiber is inserted through a needle into the varicose vein under ultrasound guidance. The laser is activated and, as the optic fiber is removed from the vein, it heats and closes the vein. Once the vein is closed, the blood that was circulating through the vein is naturally re-routed to other healthy veins. Over time, the closed vein is absorbed by the body.
It’s important to understand that ELT cannot treat veins that are too small, too twisted, or too close to the surface of the skin. This means the average ELT patient will require sclerotherapy in conjunction with ELT to treat the smaller veins.