Sclerotherapy – Varicose Vein Treatment
In a sclerotherapy procedure, medication is injected into the unwanted vein to cause it to close. The medication displaces the blood causing the vein to appear lighter and irritates the lining, causing the vein to collapse. Compression stockings create external compression which keep the vein closed and prevents blood from flowing to it. Within a month’s time the vein is absorbed by the body and disappears.
It is performed right here in our office. The procedure isn’t painful, though the injection itself may cause a slight burning sensation, which only lasts a few seconds. The majority of patients say the procedure is less painful then anticipated.
You will need to wear your compression stockings for the first 24 hours after the procedure and throughout the day for the following seven days. The continuing wearing of the compression stockings will reduce swelling and pain. You may experience bruising or tenderness for a few days at the injection site. Your legs will look worse before they look better. Though some veins may require retreatment you should see vast improvement in about a month.
Unfortunately, this treatment is considered cosmetic in nature and the cost of sclerotherapy is not covered by any insurance companies.
The procedure will take approximately 15-30 minutes. The number of treatments may vary and will be discussed before the treatment takes place. The procedure is usually scheduled 4-6 weeks apart.
There is no preparation required. It is recommended to stop smoking and taking aspirin a few days before you receive your treatments. Anyone on blood thinners is not a candidate.
Walking is highly recommended soon after the procedure to increase circulation and promote healing for 15-20 minutes. All high-impact activity sports and exercise should be avoided for the first 3 days or any activity that puts pressure on the treated area. Walking is the simplest and most effective exercise for good vein function.
Spider veins have no function. The only reason they are removed is because they appear unsightly. Removing them does no harm.
Generally sclerotherapy is used the treat very small superficial veins next to the skin. It is not as effective for large veins since they require large amounts of the sclerosants. When large veins are treated with the sclerotherapy a stronger and higher volume of solution is required.