Sclerotherapy treatment was developed in the 1920’s and is a simple well-proven procedure to treat spider veins. A solution, called a “sclerosing agent,” is injected into the veins to be eliminated. The “sclerosing agent” used generally causes the vein to blanch (turn white) initially, then become red/inflamed. This will fade over a period of 2-5 weeks. During the procedure a mild burning sensation may occur, and a cramping sensation may be felt for 1 to2 minutes when larger varicose veins are injected. The sclerotherapy procedure takes about 15 to 20 minutes and consists of multiple injections. Spider veins respond to sclerotherapy in 3 to 6 weeks. If the veins respond to the treatment, they will not reappear. Over time new veins may appear. Final results may not be apparent for several months; most patients experience a 60-80% improvement. Prior to scheduling your sclerotherapy treatment, you may be advised that aspirin and aspirin-containing medications be avoided prior to the procedure, if possible.
The treatment is performed in the doctor’s office. A tiny syringe filled with 23.4% sodium chloride sterile solution, is injected with a very fine needle directly into the blood vessel. The sclerosing agent creates inflammation in the lining of the vein causing it to eventually swell shut. The needle is withdrawn and pressure is applied. Some veins may require more than one injection. Post treatment care include; no vigorous activity for 24 hrs, wear a compression wrap or stocking for 24-48 hours to help keep pressure on the veins to reduce bruising, walking is encouraged to increase blood flow.
Bruises around the treated areas usually disappear after the first week. A tan or brownish pigment may persist for 3-5 weeks, when larger vessels are treated. Rarely, ulcers and scarring may occur if the salt solution leaks into the surrounding tissue.
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