Endovenous Laser Treatment of Saphenous Vein Reflux
Ultrasonography, Doppler, Duplex
Readily available noninvasive diagnostic tests now allow physicians to accurately map out abnormal venous pathways and identify sources of reflux. In recent years, minimally invasive alternatives to surgical treatment of saphenous vein reflux, the main contributor to most cases of symptomatic varicose veins, have been developed with promising results.(1-8) The latest percutaneous technique developed to treat incompetent saphenous veins is endovenous laser, which allows delivery of laser energy directly into the vein lumen to cause collagen contraction and denudation of endothelium. This stimulates vein-wall thickening with eventual fibrosis of the vein. These modern percutaneous techniques now provide patients with alternatives to ligation and stripping for treatment of significant sources of venous reflux without many of the potential complications associated with surgery.