What is Sclerotherapy?
Sclerotherapy is a simple office treatment that can clear spider veins. Sclerotherapy involves injecting a pharmaceutical – called a sclerosant – into problem veins. The sclerosant causes the veins to scar and collapse so blood no longer fills them. The body will absorb the diseased veins and reroute blood to healthy veins within a few weeks. Using a fine needle we inject the veins with a pharmaceutical which causes injury to the vessel. Through the body’s normal response to injury, the vein is “dissolved ” and disappears.
Reasons For Sclerotherapy
Sclerotherapy may be right for you if you experience one or more of the following:
- Leg cramps, especially at night
- Redness or swelling
- Pain, aching or burning sensations in your legs or feet
- Scaly, dry or discolored skin
- Discomfort from sitting or standing for long periods
Individuals troubled by varicose veins may choose, in consultation with their physician, to undergo sclerotherapy either because they find them unattractive or because the diseased veins are causing unpleasant and/or dangerous symptoms.
Is Sclerotherapy Painful?
Maybe you’ve had previous painful spider vein treatments with saline, so-called “saline injections”, and are worried that all sclerotherapy burns and hurts. Good news! It doesn’t. Today’s new FDA-approved pharmaceuticals are relatively painless and are much more effective than saline.
What Are The Results?
Sclerotherapy sessions typically last about 30 minutes during which there are numerous injections. Sclerotherapy patients can usually see positive results within four to six several weeks. Although patients sometimes report a brief period of itching and treated areas may appear bruised for a few days, a little discomfort is experienced. Treated veins generally don’t come back, but new veins may appear. The number of sessions needed to reach a patient’s goal may vary, depending on the number and size of the veins treated.
Patients can return home after sclerotherapy. Most patients return to work and resume regular activities the next day, although exercise and other types of strenuous activities should be avoided for one to two weeks. Compression bandages are typically worn for about a week or so after the procedure. Although it may take up to a month for the patient to see the full results, some improvement is usually visible right away.
To promote vascular health and retain the positive effects of sclerotherapy, it is recommended that patients maintain a healthy weight and make exercise part of their daily routine.