Sclerotherapy is a medical procedure used to eradicate varicose veins and spider veins. It involves the injection of a salt solution directly into the vein, which irritates the blood vessel lining and causes it to swell and stick together, clotting the blood. Over time, the blood vessel turns into scar tissue that fades away. Sclerotherapy has been in use since the 1930s for treating vascular conditions.
Treating Spider Veins
Similar to varicose veins, spider veins are caused by increased pressure in the veins. They appear as a web of red or blue veins spreading across the surface of your legs. While the exact cause of these has yet to be pinpointed, spider veins can result in dangerous blood clots if left untreated. Sclerotherapy is one of the most effective procedures to treat this condition.
The Sclerotherapy Procedure
The salt solution is injected directly into affected veins using a very fine needle. You may experience slight discomfort for about two minutes, especially when larger veins are injected.
A typical Sclerotherapy procedure takes about 15 to 30 minutes. The number of veins treated depends on the location and size of veins and the health condition of the patient. This treatment is done at our office. Following treatment, you may be advised to avoid aerobic activities for a few days.
What Are the Side Effects?
You may experience the following during the healing process:
- Itching for up to two days after treatment
- Red, raised areas at the site of injection that will disappear after a few days
- Bruising, which may remain from a few days to a few weeks
While Sclerotherapy has an excellent success rate, some risks remain, such as:
- Larger injected veins might become hard and lumpy, and may take several months to dissolve
- Brown spots or lines may occur at the site and may disappear after about six months.
- The development of fine, new blood vessels may occur at the site of treatment a few days or weeks afterward, and may disappear within three to twelve months.
Candidates for Sclerotherapy
Before a Sclerotherapy treatment, it will be decided during your consultation if you are fit for the procedure. Those who are pregnant or have had a past blood clot will be evaluated on a personal basis. Candidacy will also depend on the health of the area requiring treatment, as well as the cause of the clot.
Preparation for Sclerotherapy
If you need to use an antibiotic before treatment, consult our medical team. Applying lotions to the legs before a Sclerotherapy treatment is not advised, and it is often suggested to avoid Ibuprofen, aspirin, or other anti-inflammatory medications for 72 hours before Sclerotherapy.
Schedule Your Consultation
If you’re tired of varicose and spider veins, Sclerotherapy could be the perfect solution for you. At Medical Aesthetics of New England – with offices in Acton and Fitchburg – our medical team will work with you to determine the safest and most effective treatment plan for your needs. Contact Medical Aesthetics of New England today to schedule your consultation.