Vein Treatment

Venous Ablation in Mesa, AZ

Venous insufficiency is a very common condition resulting from decreased blood flow from the leg veins up to the heart. Normally, one-way valves in the veins keep blood flowing toward the heart, against the force of gravity. When the valves weaken and don’t close properly, blood flows backwards. This condition is called reflux. Veins that have lost their valve effectiveness become elongated, rope-like, bulged, and thickened. These are commonly known as varicose veins.

The board-certified vein specialists at Tri-City Vein and Vascular Center have extensive experience performing venous ablation procedures. Call (480) 835-6100 to request an appointment at our vein center in Mesa.

What is Venous Ablation?

For patients suffering from varicose veins, vein ablation is a minimally invasive procedure that treats the veins from the inside. This outpatient procedure is performed by an interventional radiologist and uses heat energy from a laser to seal the afflicted vein.

Is Venous Ablation right for me?

Your cardiovascular specialist can best determine if you are a candidate for the procedure. Enlarged and swollen blood vessels commonly associated with varicose veins can also cause pain and impaired walking that can generally worsen as the day goes on. In more severe cases darkening of the skin can occur. Compared to traditional vein stripping techniques, venous ablation is effective, has fewer negative outcomes (up to 95% success rates), leaves virtually no scars and has much less pain during recovery.

Is Venous Ablation safe?

Venous ablation is extremely safe, however as with all surgical procedures, there are risks that should be fully discussed with a physician. Some of these risks, although minimal, can include perforation of the vein, thrombosis, pulmonary embolism, phlebitis, infection and skins burns if the vein treated is close to the surface of the skin.

How should I prepare for this procedure?

No special preparation is necessary. However you must let your technologist or physician know if you are allergic to anesthetics, have a pacemaker, internal defibrillator or other implanted medical device. You will be asked to wear protective glasses while lasers are in use. To minimize the risk of bruising and bleeding, patients who take blood thinners may be asked to stop their medication prior to the procedure. The leg being treated will be sterilized and covered with a surgical drape and a local anesthetic will be administered to the site where the incision will be made, generally immediately above or below the knee.

What should I expect during this exam?

Unlike more invasive procedures that surgically strip veins from the leg, venous ablation uses a catheter, which is inserted through a single and very small incision. The skin is sterilized, local anesthesia administered, and a small needle is inserted into the vein to be treated using ultrasound for guidance. An external ultrasound transducer is used to study the vein and track its path. It is also used to guide the insertion of the catheter and gauge effectiveness of the procedure. The tip of the catheter utilizes fiber optics to deliver laser energy to heat and seal off the vein. Sealing off the faulty vein does not adversely affect circulation because other veins assume management for blood return back to the heart. The treated vein shrinks and seals and is unlikely to reopen and cause a recurrence of symptoms. Your physician may prescribe compression stockings to enhance your comfort and request that you have a follow-up ultrasound exam in two to four weeks to ensure that the procedure was successful.

Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA) (ClosureFast™) for Venous Reflux Disease

Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA) is a minimally invasive procedure used in the treatment of venous reflux disease. Under ultrasound guidance, radiofrequency energy is transmitted to the vein through a catheter, resulting in closure of the vein. Unlike vein “stripping” patients treated with RFA are usually able to resume activities in a day.

Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA).
vein treatment before and after image.

Tri-City Vein Center uses the ClosureFast™ procedure, which is performed on an outpatient basis. Using ultrasound guidance one of our board-certified vascular physicians will position the catheter into the diseased vein through a small opening in the skin. The small catheter delivers heat to the vein wall, causing it to shrink and the vein to seal closed. Once the diseased vein is closed, blood will reroute itself to other healthy veins.

Following the procedure, a simple bandage is placed over the insertion site, and additional compression may be provided to aid healing. Your physician will encourage you to walk, and to refrain from extended standing and strenuous activities for a period of time.

Procedure Highlights

  • Minimally invasive, outpatient procedure
  • Proven results with positive patient outcomes
  • Lower rates of pain, bruising and complications and a faster improvement in patients’ quality of life
  • Average patient typically resumes normal activities within a few days following treatment
  • Most patients report a noticeable improvement in symptoms within 1-2 weeks following procedure
  • Covered by most insurance providers

*Individual results may vary.

Frequently Asked Questions about the ClosureFast™

Is the Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA) procedure painful?

Most patients report feeling minimal pain during the RFA procedure.4 Your physician will give you a local or regional anesthetic to numb the treatment area.

How quickly can I resume normal activity?

Patients treated with the Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA) procedure may resume normal activities more quickly than patients who undergo surgical vein stripping or laser ablation. With the RFA procedure, the average patient typically resumes normal activities within a few days.5 For a week following the treatment, your vein specialist recommends a regular walking regimen and suggests you refrain from very strenuous activities (heavy lifting, for example) or prolonged periods of standing.

How soon after treatment will my symptoms improve?

Most patients report a noticeable improvement in their symptoms within one to two weeks following the procedure.4

Is there any scarring, bruising, or swelling after the procedure?

Most patients report limited to no scarring, bruising, or swelling following the Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA) procedure using the RFA catheter. 4

How is the Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA) different from endovenous laser?

Although the RFA procedure and 980 nm endovenous laser ablation are both minimally invasive procedures, a comparative, multicenter study showed that the RFA procedure was associated with statistically significant lower rates of pain, bruising, and complications. Patients undergoing the RFA procedure also reported improvements in quality of life measures up to four 4 times faster than patients treated with 980 nm endovenous laser ablation. 4

How is the Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA) different from vein stripping?

During vein stripping, incisions are made in the groin and calf, and a tool is threaded through the diseased vein to pull the vein out of the leg. With the RFA procedure, only one small incision is made at the insertion site and the vein is then treated and left in place. This minimally invasive approach reduces the likelihood of pain and bruising associated with vein stripping surgery.6,7

Is the Radiofrequency Ablation (RFA) procedure covered by insurance?

Many insurance companies pay for the RFA procedure in part or in full. The RFA procedure has coverage policies with major health insurers. As a courtesy, our venous authorization team will verify your coverage.

Request an Appointment

The expertly trained vein specialists at Tri-City Vein Center have extensive experience treating patients throughout the Mesa area for vein conditions. Call (480) 835-6100 to request an appointment today.