Science & Technology

Cooltouch CTEV LaserThe Altus Coolglide Excel Laser

The Cooltouch laser is used to treat large varicose veins. A laser fiber is inserted into the vein through a needle and laser light is applied. This heats and kills the vein.

The wavelength of light that is used is unique to the Cooltouch. It fires infrared light at 1320nm. This wavelength is absorbed by water, causing it to heat up. Prior to its introduction, lasers almost all used infrared light at 810nm (there were some using 940nm). These wavelengths of light are absorbed by hemoglobin.

It would seem that there should be no difference between these devices in terms of the effect of treatments since both of them are causing a heat injury to the vein. But nothing could be further from the truth. While both lasers are very effective at destroying varicose veins, the difference in comfort for the patients is staggering. Lasers that use 810nm and 940nm cause significant pain and bruising for a large percentage of patients. These patients often required narcotic pain meds like codeine. But the Cooltouch, with its 1320nm laser light causes only mild discomfort and virtually no bruising. No one needs narcotics and most patients don't even need simple analgesics like Tylenol or Advil.

In the photo the thin strand coming from the front of the laser is the optical fiber that is inserted into the vein to transmit the laser light. It passes through a little blue box on the tray in the foreground. This blue box is an automated motor that pulls the laser fiber slowly out of the vein as laser energy is applied.



Biosound Esaote MyLab 5 Ultrasound

Biosound Esaote MyLab 5 Ultrasound

The MyLab 5 is a colour Doppler ultrasound system that allows us to diagnose and treat varicose veins more effectively. Our use of ultrasound during most visits sets York Vein Clinic apart from most vein clinics.

It has several purposes:

1) We use it to make an accurate diagnosis by visualizing veins beneath the skin. Using ultrasound, we track a varicose vein back to its source. After all, if the source is not treated, the problem is not treated. Most vein clinics do not have this capability.

2) It allows us to guide a needle into a vein that cannot be seen or felt.

3) It allows us to track the foam we inject to ensure it goes where we want it to go.

4) We use it to track the progress of our treatment. We can see the results of the previous treatment and see what needs to be treated next.

5) We can find complications of treament.


Elite Pocket DopplerElite Pocket Doppler

This hand held device is used to listen to blood flow in veins. Most commonly we use it to listen for veins at your initial consultation, especially when it looks like there are no varicose veins. They could be too deep to see or feel. The doppler will find them, then we can conduct a more thorough examination with ultrasound. 






The VeinLite is a high-powered fiber optic halogen light source that allows us to see veins through the skin. It is used during treatment to locate veins that we want to inject but cannot see or feel.

VeinLite pictures








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