About Sclerotherapy for Varicose and Spider Veins

Spider and varicose veins on the legs, breasts, hands, feet, and vulva can be successfully treated with sclerotherapy. Sclerotherapy is a minimally invasive procedure that involves the injection of a sclerosing solution directly into the targeted veins. The solution causes the veins to collapse, and over the weeks to months following treatment, your body gradually resorbs them. Studies have shown that as many as 50%-80% of injected veins may be eliminated with each session of sclerotherapy. This is a quick, easy, and successful procedure, that is virtually painless, and requires little downtime.

What kinds of veins can be treated with sclerotherapy?

It is possible to treat both varicose veins and spider veins with sclerotherapy. Spider veins are small, thin veins that lie close to the surface of the skin. Although these super-fine veins are connected with the larger venous system, they are not an essential part of it, and there is no danger in sealing them off with sclerotherapy. Varicose veins are larger than spider veins, darker in color, and often tend to bulge from the surface of the skin. Varicose veins are more likely to cause sensations of heaviness, fatigue, and pain in the legs than spider veins are.

What causes varicose and spider veins?

There are several risk factors for the development of varicose and spider veins. If you have a strong family history of these veins, then your chances of developing them will be increased. Other risk factors include venous insufficiency, pregnancy, exogenous hormone use (such as oral contraceptive pills), weight gain, activities that require prolonged sitting or standing, obesity, advanced age, excessive sun exposure, and the use of certain medications.

What are some potential risks or side effects of sclerotherapy?

While sclerotherapy is generally a very safe procedure with minimal downtime, there are some risks a person must consider before they elect to proceed with treatment. It is fairly common to experience hives for the first several hours following treatment, followed by bruises that become apparent as the hives resolve. Hyperpigmentation where bruises have occurred, or along the vein itself, can be somewhat common, especially in those with more melanin-rich skin. It is possible for small clots to form in treated veins, which may need to be evacuated around a week after treatment. Very rarely, a condition known as thrombophlebitis can occur, in which a treated vessel develops a more extensive clot as well as accompanying inflammation. If some if some of the sclerosing agent spills into the surrounding skin, or if it diffuses into an adjacent arteriole during treatment, the skin can break down and a small ulcer can develop. While these often eventually heal without issue, scarring is possible. These potential risks and complications are not always possible to predict or avoid, and it is important for a person to be aware of them, and to accept them, before proceeding with treatment.

Am I a good candidate for sclerotherapy?

While sclerotherapy is a minimally invasive procedure that is safe for most people, there are some who will not be good candidates for this treatment. These include women who are pregnant, individuals who are not able to tolerate wearing compression garments for the recommended amount of time following treatment, those who have bleeding or clotting diseases, as well as those who have problems with wound healing.

Why trust Gateway Aesthetic Institute and Laser Center for the treatment of my unwanted veins?

Our physicians at the Gateway Aesthetic Institute have been treating unwanted veins with sclerotherapy for decades. Our center has been a member of the American Society of Phlebology since its inception. We treat hundreds of patients annually, and pride ourselves on obtaining excellent results in those who are good candidates for this treatment. Additionally, because some very small veins can be difficult to access via injections, we also possess a wide range of state-of-the-art vascular lasers that our physicians may pivot to, in the event that sclerotherapy is not the best option for you. Overall, the experience of our physicians, and our wide range of treatment options for unwanted veins on numerous locations on the body, allow us to offer you safe and efficacious vein treatments that will enable you to be more confident about your appearance.

Begin your aesthetic journey with us today.