What is Sclerotherapy?
Sclerotherapy is a minimally invasive procedure that treats spider veins by collapsing them through. This is done through the use of a solvent and is most commonly done on legs. Additionally, patients can receive sclerotherapy on their hands and chest. Patients have been receiving sclerotherapy for medical and cosmetic reasons with great success since the 1930s.
Candidates for sclerotherapy treatment are typically troubled by spider veins, either because they find them unattractive or because they experience uncomfortable symptoms. These symptoms commonly include aching, burning, swelling and cramping. Men or women who are experiencing these troubles can visit our office for a consultation with Dr. Tracy Evans. After a consultation, patients may decide that treatment is right for them.
Sclerotherapy has proven to be a safe procedure and is performed outpatient in the doctor's office. Typically, sclerotherapy is performed in less than an hour, although a varying number of injections may be required, depending on the number of veins involved. Patients do not require an anesthetic and usually report little or no discomfort during the procedure, though some patients report experiencing a very mild burning sensation. In some instances, several sclerotherapy treatments may be necessary.
During sclerotherapy, Dr. Evans will inject a solution of saline and a sclerosant into the damaged veins. This causes irritation in the affected veins and as a result, they eventually collapse. When the weakened veins collapse, the body reabsorbs them and other healthier veins take place in the circulatory system.
Risks of Sclerotherapy
As with any medical procedure, there are certain risks associated with sclerotherapy. Sclerotherapy is considered a safe procedure but certain minimal, temporary side effects are to be expected. More serious complications are rare. These mild side effects include:
- Air bubbles
- Allergic reaction to sclerosant
- Blood clots
- Nerve Damage
Since sclerotherapy is an outpatient procedure, patients are able to return home shortly after treatment. Most patients choose to return to work and normal daily activities the next day. We recommend that patients avoid exercise and strenuous activities and wear compression bandages for a week or two. Full results may take up to a month to appear but there is some improvement that is immediately noticeable. In order to promote vascular health and to preserve your sclerotherapy treatment results, Dr. Evans recommends that patients maintain a healthy weight and exercise daily.