Endovenous laser ablation (EVLA) is a minimally invasive treatment for varicose veins that has become increasingly popular in recent years. However, this procedure uses different types of laser wavelengths, and it has been unclear which one is the most effective. A recent study published on PubMed by Professor Mark Whiteley aimed to compare the effectiveness of endovenous laser ablation using 1470 nm and 1940 nm wavelengths.
The study reviewed both laboratory-based and clinical studies and found that while there is a difference in the distribution of thermal damage in the vein wall between the two wavelengths, there is little evidence of any clinically significant difference when used in incompetent saphenous veins. The study highlights the importance of reporting the size and wall thickness of the treated vein, power used, and long-term ablation rates, in addition to early post-operative symptoms, such as pain and ecchymosis, in clinical studies of EVLA. Technical differences, such as power loss in different laser/fibre systems, also need to be considered.
While the study found that there may be an advantage to using the longer wavelength in EVLA of thin-walled veins at low power, it also found that reduced power during treatment is likely to result in more long-term failures of ablation using 1940 nm. The study concludes that clinical studies looking for a difference need to consider a variety of factors and report comprehensive outcomes. The study provides valuable insight for clinicians seeking to optimize their use of EVLA for varicose vein treatment.
Overall, this study sheds light on the different wavelengths used in endovenous laser ablation and emphasizes the importance of considering a range of factors in clinical studies. It also suggests that there may be little clinical difference between 1470 nm and 1940 nm EVLA when used in incompetent saphenous veins. As the use of EVLA continues to grow, studies like this one will be essential in determining the most effective and safe treatment methods for patients with varicose veins.