What is Endovenous Ablation (EVA) ?
Endovenous Ablation is the name for a new technique to remove varicose veins by heat sealing. There are 2 methods Radiofrequency and Laser. The VNUS Closure System is the most commonly used while an alternative is the Olympus CELON RFiTT system.There are many Laser systems available.
How doesEVA work?
A fine tube (catheter) is passed through the skin near the knee and then threaded up the diseased Great (GSV)or Short saphenous vein (SSV). The catheter is attached to a power unit that heats up the end of the catheter. The heat seals the walls of the vein so that no blood can flow through it. The operation can be done under local and general anaesthetic (asleep) depending on your preference.
How is EVA different to traditional surgery?
If you have varicose veins then one of the causes is normally an incompetent Great or Small saphenous vein. Research has shown that it is important to remove this vein to treat varicose veins and reduce the chance of them coming back soon. Traditional surgery, frequently requires a cut in the groin or behind the knee to disconnect the vein and then it is removed by a stripping device. This can cause dramatic bruising. EVA avoids the need for a cut and there is minimal bruising. This means people who have EVA can usually return to normal activity sooner (often the same or next day) than those who have traditional treatment.
Is EVA better than standard surgery?
It is now thought that EVA is superior than traditional surgery for the treatment of patients with Great and small saphenous varicose veins. Scientific studies have shown that the degree of pain after EVA is much less than traditional surgery. In addition, people who have EVA return to normal activity much more quickly.
Is everyone with varicose veins able to have EVA?
No. Some people have large, winding veins that are not suitable. Your Veincare specialist will be happy to discuss whether your veins are suitable for EVA. Our research suggests that about 70% of people with varicose veins can be treated with EVA.
Is EVA all I need for my veins?
EVA will remove the major superficial veins, including the GSV , SSV and anterior thigh veins. It is, however, usually necessary to have the bulging veins around the calf, thigh and foot removed through small cuts called avulsions.
What is the catch?
EVA uses special catheters that cost several hundred pounds each. During the operation, an ultrasound machine has to be used and a technician is sometimes required to control it.
Will my insurance company pay for EVA?
EVA has been approved by the Government agency NICE. Most Insurance companies will now pay if the code used is L8540 or L8541. Some insurance companies are not able to pay for the full cost of treatment so a supplementary fee may apply.
Why do some surgeons not offer EVA?
There may be many reasons. Some surgeons may not have been trained to use the technique or their hospital may not have approved it for use because of cost.