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Radiofrequency Ablation Traverse City & Cadillac, MI

Endovenous Thermal Ablation, Radiofrequency ablation (RFA) and endovenous laser therapy (EVLT) at the Northern Michigan Vein Specialist

Both Radiofrequency ablation using the Closurefast catheter and EVLT close off incompetent or non-functioning veins by using thermal energy. They are both vein laser treatments for varicose veins, as opposed to spider veins and most insurances cover both. The heat causes the wall of the vein to contract and closes the vein behind it as the RFA catheter or laser is withdrawn. The laser delivers constant heat energy and the amount of energy produced is controlled by the rate of laser pullback. Radiofrequency, on the other hand, gives a constant temperature to treat the vein segmentally and no energy is delivered during pullback. While both laser and RFA are highly effective, there have been several studies published indicating that patients experience less postoperative pain and bruising with the RFA than they do with the laser. Dr. Heeringa of Traverse, Cadillac, & Big Rapids MI has used both devices in the past but made the switch to using RFA exclusively after seeing the difference in post-op pain in his patients.

Vein Laser Treatment | Radiofrequency Ablation Treatment Traverse City, Cadillac, Petoskey & Big Rapids MI

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Endovenous RadioFrequency Ablation (RFA) Treatment

Endovenous Radio Frequency Ablation (RF), also called the ClosureFast procedure, is a minimally invasive varicose vein treatment procedure that uses radiofrequency energy (electricity) to heat, collapse, and seals off the targeted blood vessels. The RFA procedure is preferred by Dr. Heeringa.

After using ultrasound to map the course of the vein to be treated, the physician guides a catheter (thin tube) through a small incision into the diseased vein, threading it through the blood vessel. Electricity is delivered to a heating element in 20-second pulses, heating and contracting the collagen within the walls of the vein until they shrink and shut down. This process is called ablation.

The vein is treated in segments as the catheter is gradually inched back down towards the incision. When the entire vein has been ablated, the blood flow is automatically rerouted through healthier adjacent veins, restoring healthy circulation and reducing swelling. The ablated vein becomes scar tissue and is absorbed by the body. Possible complications of endovenous radiofrequency ablation are thermal skin burns and temporary numbness.

RFA is usually covered by most private insurers and Medicare when proof of medical necessity and previous conservative therapy is provided. Approved for use in the United States by the Food and Drug Administration in 1999, the RFA treatment procedure is performed under local anesthesia in a physician’s office, ambulatory surgical center or hospital. Patients are encouraged to walk immediately following the procedure and are usually able to resume their normal activities within a day.

Both RFA and EVLA procedures are an alternative to more invasive leg stripping surgery that requires hospitalization and general anesthesia. RFA and EVLA are used primarily to treat the great saphenous veins (GSV), small saphenous vein (SSV), and other superficial veins in the legs.

RadioFrequency Ablation offers a variety of benefits:

  • Relief of symptoms
  • Less invasive; not a surgical procedure
  • Same day, outpatient procedure
  • Little to no scarring

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Endovenous Laser Ablation (EVLA) Treatment or Vein Laser Treatment

Endovenous Laser Ablation (EVLA) uses laser energy, which is simply a highly concentrated beam of light. Medical lasers work by delivering this light energy to the targeted tissue with extreme precision, so as not to affect the surrounding tissue. Lasers have proven their safety and effectiveness through years of use in all types of medical procedures, from eye surgery to dermatology. In the hands of a skilled physician, lasers offer far less risk for complications than conventional surgery.

In EVLA, a thin fiber is inserted into the damaged vein through a tiny entry point in the skin. Using ultrasound technology, a thin laser fiber is guided into the vein through a very small opening to deliver pulsed laser heat to the diseased vein wall. This causes the vein to close and seal shut, and eliminates venous reflux at its source. The veins that are closed are superficial veins that handle less than five percent of the body’s blood flow. The blood is automatically routed to other, healthy veins.

Some physicians are now using a jacketed fiber, which prevents any contact between the fiber and the vein wall. The jacketed fiber prevents much of the pain and bruising that is often associated with the most conventional method of ligation and stripping. Some patients may experience temporary soreness or some slight swelling, which can be treated effectively with over-the-counter, non-aspirin pain relievers, and typically subsides within 1 to 2 days. Possible complications of endovenous laser treatment are thermal skin burns and transient numbness.

Both RFA and EVLA procedures are an alternative to more invasive leg stripping surgery that requires hospitalization and general anesthesia. RFA and EVLA are used primarily to treat the great saphenous veins (GSV), small saphenous vein (SSV), and other superficial veins in the legs. Varicose veins that branch off from these blood vessels are treated with Sclerotherapy or Ambulatory Phlebectomy.

Endovenous Laser Ablation (Vein Laser Treatment) offers a variety of benefits:

  • Relief of symptoms
  • Less invasive; not a surgical procedure
  • Little downtime
  • Same day, outpatient procedure
  • Little to no scarring

Before & Afters

Radiofrequency Ablation Treatment cadillac, traverse city & big rapids, mi

Before

Radiofrequency Ablation procedure traverse city, mi

After


We proudly serve patients from Traverse City, Cadillac, Manistee, Big Rapids, Houghton Lake, Grayling and surrounding areas with advanced vein treatment. Call today for your consultation at 231-946-1488 or complete a Contact Form here!


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