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Br J Surg. 2006 Jul;93(7):831-5.

Endovenous laser treatment for long saphenous vein incompetence.

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Department of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery, Belfast City Hospital, Lisburn Road, Belfast BT9 7AB, UK.



Endovenous laser treatment is a percutaneous technique used for the treatment of long saphenous vein (LSV) incompetence. This paper presents the results of an uncontrolled case series undertaken to assess the feasibility, safety and efficacy of this technique.


Some 145 incompetent LSVs in 136 patients with saphenofemoral reflux were treated with endovenous laser. The data were evaluated prospectively. Assessment was carried out at 1 week, 3 and 12 months for LSV occlusion and symptomatic relief.


Primary procedural success was achieved in 124 (85.5 per cent) of 145 LSVs. Reasons for primary failure included failed cannulation, failure to pass the guidewire and patient discomfort. At 3 months' follow-up, 105 (89.7 per cent) of 117 veins were totally and nine (7.7 per cent) were partially occluded. At 12 months, 63 (76 per cent) of 83 veins were totally and 15 (18 per cent) were partially occluded. At this stage 73 (88 per cent) of 83 patients remained satisfied, but 26 (31 per cent) had residual or recurrent varicosities. Of these, only five required further treatment. Complications included saphenous nerve injury in one patient and superficial skin burns in a second.


Endovenous laser treatment for LSV reflux is safe and can be carried out under local anaesthesia in an outpatient setting with good patient satisfaction and low complication rates.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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