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Is laser treatment for varicose veins risky?

Q: What are the risks in laser treatment for varicose veins? Please suggest a good doctor who can perform this surgery in Mumbai?

A:The complications that are likely to occur in the laser treatment of varicose veins may differ in different institutions. The basis for the variation is due to the relative recent introduction of the procedure of the laser treatment in the management of varicose veins and lack of the universal acceptance of the results as standard. The commonest complication is feeling of tightness, this is experienced by over 90% of the patients. This usually resolves soon and is not permanent. The second complication is the bruising of the limb; this is also reversible and last for about 4 weeks. The other problems are feeling of numbness, skin burn which may be temporary or permanent depending on the safely levels followed during the procedure. There is also a small incidence of thrombophlebitis, which is distressing but not dangerous. There are other complications, which can be very serious and are encountered less frequently if the protocol is strictly followed and precautions are taken during the execution of the procedure. The most serious of these are the damage of the deep veins. These may be perforation of the deep vein or the damage to these eventually leading to the venous thrombosis. This is usually lasting damage. The over all safety of the procedure is comparable to the surgical procedure and is certainly less invasive. The only limitation is that not all veins can be treated with this kind of treatment and not all people are suitable for this modality and best option is to consult a surgeon who is doing the surgery as well as Laser treatment so that he/she is not biased for the procedure led therapy but tailors the treatment on the individual needs of the patient. This may be only laser treatment, surgery or a combined approach. Regrettably, I cannot recommend anyone in Mumbai. A local doctor may be the best person to do this reliably.

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