South Florida Varicose Vein Debate: Laser or Surgery – What’s Best for Vein Treatment?

When it comes to varicose veins, most patients from Miami to Aventura to Pembroke Pines and Boca Raton have learned that these blood vessels are important – but occasionally problematic. Veins carry blood back from the body to the lungs and heart. Yet, malfunctioning valves disrupt flow; obstructed blood can pool and bulge under pressure in the veins. The result can range from unsightly appearance to serious circulatory problems.

So, what’s the best solution? The answer is: It depends on the type and severity of the case. Read what Soffer Health Institute has written about Understanding Varicose Veins in the past.

But when choosing between laser treatment or surgery, what difference or benefits will one procedure deliver over the other?

Patients have various choices depending on their individual case. Traditional, external laser treatment often works best with shallow, small spider veins or varicose veins located close to the skin’s surface. Laser light is emitted in pulses. The veins scar and eventually go away, possibly leaving some short-term discoloration. With light anesthetic and no ongoing pain management necessary, this in-office procedure can solve the problem in several sessions. Depending on recurrence of problem veins, patients could need additional treatments.

Surgery is another option. One form is called endovenous laser treatments. Performed with minimal local anesthetic, this process generally is ideal for those patients with larger varicose veins. A catheter is placed into the vein and laser is inserted through it. The procedure leaves the vein intact, but cuts off its flow back to the heart and lungs (key to any varicose vein treatment is the anatomical reality that most of these veins are not singularly critical to patient health. They can be stripped or closed off usually without jeopardizing long-term patient health).

Finally, in one of the oldest vein care procedures – vein ligation – is performed as an in-office procedure where physicians strip affected portions of the vein from the leg. Alternatively, the physician can tie the vein closed. Incisions and need for sutures can be minimal. Patients wear compression stockings during a short recovery that may last a few days.

Of course, experienced cardiologists have other options to offer their patients, including sclerothrapy, where foam is injected into the veins.

As with any procedure, insurance companies may not cover all – or even any – of these procedures, especially if deemed medically unnecessary or solely for cosmetic purposes. Patients should discuss individual options with your physician. Soffer Health Institute offers vein therapy in all its offices.

About Soffer Health Institute

The Soffer Health Institute, with offices throughout Miami-Dade and Broward counties, Florida, is dedicated to making patients feel at home throughout their medical evaluation and treatment procedures. Headed by Dr. Ariel Soffer, who is board certified in cardiovascular disease and is a Fellow in the American College of Cardiology, the medical team thoroughly evaluates each patient’s condition with the latest research and techniques available and presents a customized treatment plan that best suits each patient’s individual needs. Learn more at www.SofferHealth.com.

 

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