Ablation or Sclerotherapy?
- Posted on: Apr 30 2016
Spider veins and varicose veins each present unique problems to appearance. Although they are not typically concerning to overall health, the visible appearance of bulging or unattractive vein clusters can cause a great deal of frustration and embarrassment. Because they typically appear on the ankles and legs, spider and varicose veins can be hidden beneath clothing; but who wants to feel “covered up” at all times?
Spider veins, which are the small web-like networks of red, blue, and purple vessels that lie just beneath the skin, can develop on areas of the body such as the face, making them even more challenging to disguise. The bad news is that some people are just predisposed to problematic veins. The good news is that there are several ways to banish them for good. Two common treatments are ablation and sclerotherapy.
Endovenous Thermal Ablation
This method of treatment involves heating targeted vessels using a tiny catheter that is guided by ultrasound imaging. Radio frequency or laser energy may be used to achieve the desired outcome. In the days after treatment, the affected veins close up on their own and fade away.
The sclerotherapy procedure has been widely used for many years. It can safely destroy both spider veins and varicose veins that are smaller in size. Sclerotherapy achieves the same goal as endovenous thermal ablation, to close problematic veins. However, it works through tiny injections of a sclerosing medication. When the solution is inserted into the vein, inflammation and irritation, which causes no pain to the patient, leads to the closure of the vein. Although the appearance of veins fades after just one treatment, we may schedule follow-up injections to achieve clear, healthy skin.
Both endovenous thermal ablation and sclerotherapy are performed after tissues have been numbed with local anesthetic. Neither causes scarring, and the recovery process is similar between the two methods. Depending on your particular situation, you may be instructed to wear compression garments for a few days. However, you should be able to resume your normal activities very quickly. In fact, walking is recommended in order to encourage adequate circulation through the treated area.
Are unsightly veins keeping you from optimal confidence? Contact The Vein Clinic in Columbia, South Carolina at (803) 253-8667.