Sclerotherapy


What Is sclerotherapy?

Sclerotherapy is considered the gold standard treatment for removing spider and most larger varicose leg veins. It is a very cost-effective in-office procedure that seldom leaves a scar or produces adverse effects. A concentrated saline or specially developed chemical solution is injected with a very small needle into the spider or varicose vein. The procedure is typically painless. The solution causes the vein to close up or collapse and become scar tissue that is eventually absorbed by the body. The work of carrying the blood is shifted to other healthy blood vessels nearby.

Why is the consult necessary?

Each patient is evaluated during the initial consultation to determine the best treatment options, based on medical history, physical exam and ultrasound. Spectrum Dermatology treats all sizes and types of veins.

Who is qualified to perform sclerotherapy?

Since this is a medication being injected into the blood stream, sclerotherapy should only be performed by health professionals licensed to give medication injections.

Are there side effects or complications?

Most patients report few, if any, minor side effects, which usually disappear in time. Temporary reactions can include slight itching, minor bruising, localized redness and minor tenderness over larger treated veins. Some patients experience pigmentation, or staining, of the skin where the blood vessel once was. This pigmentation is not usually permanent and fades with time.

Are there any restrictions or requirements after treatment?

Compression hose and gloves must be worn after treatment to obtain optimal results. Compression hose are available in the office for purchase. All patients are encouraged to walk after treatment, but heavy cardiovascular or high impact workouts and weight training are discouraged for one week after treatment. Hot tub soaking and sun exposure should be avoided as well.

What are the expected results?

With sclerotherapy, most patients can expect a 60% improvement in the number of veins with each treatment. Individual results will vary based on patient compliance, individual healing process, and the experience of the provider.

Sclerotherapy generally requires approximately 2-3 treatment sessions spaced approximately 6-8 weeks apart. One to three injections are usually required to effectively treat any one vein. The same area should not be retreated for 6-8 weeks to allow for complete healing, although other areas may undergo treatment during this time. Veins sometimes start to fade immediately, but more often fade in the 6-8 weeks following treatment. Although sclerotherapy works for existing spider and varicose veins, it does not prevent new ones from developing, but may decrease this risk.

Is sclerotherapy dangerous?

Spider veins and varicose veins that are treated early and often actually improve the circulation.Sclerotherapy has few risks and is tolerated well with a skilled provider.

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