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 BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Millisecond pulsed 1,064 nm Nd:YAG lasers have been developed for the treatment of leg telangiectasias. To date there have been very few side by side comparison studies of laser versus the gold standard sclerotherapy in treating small leg veins. This study aims to compare a long pulsed Nd:YAG laser with contact cooling to sclerotherapy for treating small diameter leg telangiectasias by evaluating objective and subjective clinical effects. STUDY DESIGN/PATIENTS AND METHODS: Fourteen patients were selected with leg telangiectasias ranging from 0.5 to 2 mm at four comparable sites. One site was treated with long pulsed Nd:YAG alone, the second received sclerotherapy alone, the third laser then sclerotherapy, and the last one sclerotherapy then laser. The patients were followed up at 3 months after the last treatment. Photographs were taken pre-operatively and at 3 months after the last session. They were used for objective and comparative analysis. Statistical analysis was performed using Friedman's test controlling for subject. RESULTS: Improvement was tabulated from the photographic assessment on an improvement scale from 0 (no change) to 4 (greater than 75% clearing). There were clinical improvements in the laser group than sclerotherapy without statistical significance. Side effects were minimal and included hyperpigmentation. CONCLUSIONS: This pilot study demonstrates that the Smartepil LS long pulse Nd:YAG 1,064 nm laser can yield results similar to sclerotherapy in the treatment of small leg telangiectasias. Combination of both methods could increase response to treatment. Lasers Surg. Med. 34:273-276, 2004. Copyright 2004 Wiley-Liss, Inc.

PMID: 15022257 [PubMed - in process]