The Vein Train

Near-painless laser treatment for varcose veins is now available locally.

Vascular and pigmented lesions, including leg veins, spider veins and telangiectasia, are now being treated – quickly, near-painlessly and effectively -right here in the UAE through the application of fourth generation laser technology. Most importantly, this technology makes such treatment possible on all skin colours, marking a major breakthrough.

Pioneered by the UK-based company Diomed, the application of diode laser technology in medical treatment has been extended to dermatology since the last two years. “Diomed offers a range of diode laser systems for physicians wishing to perform a variety of aesthetic laser treatments, including the treatment of vascular and pigmented lesions,” says Amer Qavi of Quantum Medical Equipment, the company which represents Diomed in the Middle East, Iran, Pakistan and India.

The Laserlite aesthetic laser from Diomed is a versatile and high-powered system. Pulse widths from 50-250 milliseconds give the physician unlimited opportunity to
adjust treatment parameters to suit skin colour, vessel size and depth, ensuring an optimal result for each individual application. Other major advantages include minimised blistering, deep penetration to underlying tissue and low absorption in the dermis.

This laser technology is certainly effective in treatment, agree experts. “An earlier method of treatment was hyfurcation which involved placing a fine needle under the skin where the vessel lay and then passing either an electrical current or, more recently, a radio-surgical current, to disintegrate the vessel,” explains Dr. Jaffer Ikram Khan, plastic and reconstructive surgeon. “Another treatment consisted of placing an irritant chemical under the skin (scle-rosing) which dissolved the vessel.”

Both these treatments were time-consuming and somewhat painful, he points out. The diode laser treatment, in contrast, is non-invasive and quicker. “A laser treatment is based on the principle that certain frequencies of light are selectively absorbed by red blood cells, thereby heating these blood vessels rapidly to a boiling point. This
causes these blood vessels to vapourise under the skin and these are reabsorbed by the body,” he explains.

Diode laser frequency and wavelength can be adjusted to target pigmentation and red blood cells which are the essential components of vascular lesions. “In trained hands, diode laser treatments cause much less hyperpig-mentation than other modalities of treatment. So it can be used on all skin types,” he stresses.

“This machine is very good,” vouches Dr. Minal Patwardhan, dermatologist. “There is minimal pain which is easily remedied by ice packs or local anaesthetic creams.”

Spider veins disappear on the spot, she says. And while deeper veins may show crusting for a while, the skin is unmarked in the long run.
“This treatment works on all skin tones unlike earlier generation lasers. It can take as little as two minutes up to a maximum of 15 minutes for a whole leg marked with spider veins. Multiple sittings may be required for permanent removal,” she adds.

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