Varicose Vein Treatment: What Is ELVeS?

Varicose Vein Treatment

ELVeS is a type of laser based varicose vein treatment. The name “ELVeS” is a shorthand way of saying “Endo Laser Vein System,” which of course is more of a mouthful. The ELVeS procedure is performed with only local anesthesia in a clinic or doctor’s office, rather than a hospital. ELVeS is usually painless and can be completed in under an hour in most cases. After ELVeS varicose vein treatment, the patient is asked to walk a bit to increase their circulation and lower the risk of post procedure blood clots. Compression stockings are worn as an added precaution.

When Is ELVeS Used?

ELVeS varicose vein treatment is most often used on the saphenous vein system in the thigh region. Some doctors will use ELVeS to treat the saphenous vein system below the knee as well but extreme caution must be taken because the saphenous nerve runs very close to the saphenous vein in this region. If the laser energy hits the saphenous nerve in the calf, permanent nerve damage can result in numbness and or a stinging sensation in the inner calf region. Therefore, many vein doctors elect to use a different type of varicose vein treatment, such as sclerotherapy, in the saphenous vein system below the knee.

Why Is ELVeS Used In the Thigh If Varicose Veins Are In the Calf?

When varicose veins are visible on the calf, they are often caused by damaged veins in the thigh that may not show up as varicose veins but are the root cause of the problem. Therefore, ELVeS will be used to close the damaged vein(s) in the thigh so it no longer causes the veins in the calf to varicose. When this is the case, other types of varicose vein treatment may be used to remove the calf veins or to cosmetically treat them. A popular choice for this is sclerotherapy, sometimes in combination with ambulatory phlebectomy.

What Is the Difference Between ELVeS and EVLT?

ELVeS and EVLT are very similar procedures. Both are minimally invasive varicose vein treatment using lasers. Both are vein “closure” procedures. However, each uses differently branded equipment and the lasers on each system use a different wavelength of laser energy. EVLT uses a wavelength of 810 nm and the ELVeS system uses a wavelength of 980 or 1470 nm. Some doctors performing varicose vein treatment believe the longer wavelength of ELVeS causes a lower degree of bruising because it these longer wavelengths are absorbed better by the water in your cells. Some vein doctors also see lower post procedure inflammation and pain associated with ELVes compared with the EVLT system. They describe it as a “gentler” system.

Why Is ELVeS Sometimes Referred To As EVLT?

It should also be mentioned that EVLT was on the market before ELVeS. For this reason, EVLT is sometimes used in a generic sense to refer to all similar types of laser varicose vein treatment, including ELVeS. This is similar to the way “Xerox machine” is sometimes used to refer to other brands of copy machines because Xerox was the first brand of copy machine.

Are There Any Risks With ELVeS

There is some risk with all types of varicose vein treatment, but luckily, with modern procedures, including ELVeS, the odds of any complications are very low. Blood clots are a risk, for example, but they occur in less than two patients out of one thousand. That’s 0.2 percent of the time. You can lower your odds even more by walking and wearing your compression stockings as instructed. There’s also a very small risk of cellulitis (skin infection), particularly in obese patients and those with type 2 diabetes or other chronic diseases involving a compromised immune system.

Don’t Forget To Laugh πŸ™‚

The ELVeS system is an acronym for a trademarked varicose vein treatment. However, this acronym also obviously spells out the plural version of those little men, clad in funny green garb, who live at the North Pole, are fueled by candy, and feverishly make us toys! The pronunciation of the acronym also leads to jokes. One vein doctor ribbed online that the ELVeS varicose vein treatment was “invented” by the rock and roll legend, Elvis Presley! Yes, he evidently still lives and he’s now in the medical supply business! Humor can be a good thing in the field of medicine as it eases patient tension and anxiety. Thus, having a medical procedure with a name that begs for humor is just a little added bonus to vein doctors using the ELVeS system.

Varicose Vein Treatment Begins With a Free Evaluation

You’ll never know if you actually need ELVeS or another form of varicose vein treatment until you get professionally evaluated at a reputable vein clinic like Metro Vein Centers. They not only catalog your symptoms, the doctors and technicians at Metro Vein Centers can take an inside 3D look at your veins to determine if there is structural damage. They can also determine if you have venous reflux and how bad it is if you do. Venous reflux is when blood flows the wrong way in your veins and it can cause serious problems. If you call Metro and schedule a free evaluation, you may be able to catch venous reflux before it causes extensive damage.


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