The Difference between RFA and ClariVein Treatment

What are Varicose Veins?

Varicose veins are the results of engorged, twisted veins that are near the surface of the skin which more often than not have been exposed to excessive amounts of pressure that leaves them weakened or had already been damaged beforehand. When these veins are unable to bring the blood back to the heart, it begins to sit there and becomes the reason why those veins grow to be so swollen. These veins usually appear as spindly blue lines that branch out and are apt to bulge outwardly on the legs and feet though they are able to appear on other locations of the body. There are a few reasons why someone might become stricken with varicose veins, the most common being heredity, accident, aging, pregnancy, and obesity.  If you have varicose veins and want to get rid of the ungainly and possibly painful nuisance, here in Las Vegas’ Alpha Vein Clinic we offer the much preferred procedures to treat you for your ailment with the use of Radiofrequency Ablation and ClariVein.


What Radiofrequency Ablation does for you is using a specially designed catheter to collapse and seal the diseased vein, so that the blood can continue its flow into the other veins that are still in good physical shape. The procedure begins by raising a skin wheel with local anesthetic and accessing the diseased vein. The catheter  is then inserted through the vein. Tumescent is then  applied through ultrasound guidance to anesthetize the vein, as well as to ensure that the vein is  greater than 1 cm below the skin surface. RF energy is then applied which emits a 20-second bursts and causes the vein to shrink as the catheter is withdrawn. The procedure can take on average from thirty to fourty minutes. Using the RFA treatment gives you a quicker and less painful recovery to laser procedures and using a less intense degree of heat, causing less chance of bruising of the skin. Although, radiofrequency ablation of the veins is considered to be a very safe procedure, this  like any other procedure may have some potential risks, which we try to minimize. Some possible side effects might include DVT, cellulitis/infection, skin burn, some blood loss, bruising and mild pain or numbness in the treated area.  In our experience, majority of our patients have enjoyed a wonderful benefit by undergoing this minimally invasive procedure.


ClariVein is a procedure that has its advantages to RFA and Laser Ablations. It begins the same way a Radiofrequency Ablation would, using a catheter and threading it trough the vein, however, there is no need for the Tumescent injection.  ClariVein then disrupts the lining of the vein (the endothelia) with a drug that efficiently closes it up along with a rotational movement of the tip of the catheter. This will create not an aching discomfort but rather a “buzzing” feeling. Because this treatment does not use heat to seal up the varicose vein, it causes fewer traumas to the vein. It also prevents bruising, nerve injuries and pains that tend to result with heat. Using the ClariVein treatment also means you do not need to go through the  multiple needle sticks and the internal pressure of the anesthetic on the leg that you would deal with getting a laser or RFA ablation.

Choose a Preference

Though there are some key differences between these two procedures, each one will without a doubt get the job done and give you comfort and pain free legs. You can always consult with the doctor for more information and helpful advice on which procedure suits you the best.