Varicose veins are purplish veins that form when a small group of blood vessels near the skin’s surface dilate. Although they can appear in any place on the body, they commonly develop on the face and legs.
Let’s talk about sclerotherapy and how it may help you find relief from varicose veins.
Sclerotherapy: How It Can Help You
If you have varicose veins or a milder version called spider veins, your vein doctor may recommend sclerotherapy, a safe and effective treatment. This injection procedure is quick and does not require anesthesia.
Sclerotherapy is more than just a cosmetic treatment. Most people think varicose or spider veins are cosmetic problems only. However, they sometimes indicate serious venous problems requiring medical treatment. Some examples include:
- Blood clots, possibly leading to deep vein thrombosis
Some people also experience itching, aching, or burning sensations in their legs, which sclerotherapy may help treat. It’s best to consult with your doctor to ensure that your varicose veins aren’t problematic.
How Does Sclerotherapy Work?
During the procedure, your doctor will sterilize the treatment area with alcohol. Once the treatment area is clean, they will gradually inject a liquid solution into your veins that irritates the vein lining. When this happens, your body’s automatic response is to cause the vein to swell and close up, preventing blood from entering the vein. The vein will eventually become scar tissue and fade. Your body will reroute the blood to healthier veins.
Your doctor may use foam agents instead of liquid solutions. Foam solutions displace blood from the affected vein, which allows for more effective treatment of the vein wall.
You may experience minor cramps or stinging once the doctor inserts the fine needle into your vein. Inform your doctor if you feel intense pain.
Your doctor may also use ultrasound technology to treat veins that may not be easily visible on the skin’s surface. Ultrasound uses sound waves to produce an image of the vein, ensuring greater precision and accuracy during the injection.
Your doctor may also perform massage and compression therapy to help keep the blood out of the injected area and distribute the solution.
What Happens After The Procedure?
Sclerotherapy is a quick and virtually painless procedure. You won’t need to worry about being unable to get up and walk around after the treatment. In fact, your doctor will likely encourage you to walk and move around to prevent blood clot formation. They may also advise you to wear compression stockings or bandages for approximately two weeks.
Try to refrain from strenuous exercise for about two weeks after the treatment. Avoid sun exposure, hot showers, and hot baths, as well, to prevent dark spots.
The effects of sclerotherapy are not immediate, so you will likely need multiple treatments for optimal results. A follow-up visit after about a month will determine whether the procedure worked well or not. Generally, you’ll have to wait for six weeks before you can undergo another sclerotherapy treatment.
You should see results within three to six weeks for smaller veins and around three to four months for larger veins. Sclerotherapy can get rid of about 50-80% of injected veins. It works well for most people, with less than 10% of patients not responding to the treatment.
Can I Get Sclerotherapy?
Despite its benefits, sclerotherapy is not appropriate for everyone. You cannot get sclerotherapy if you are pregnant, breastfeeding, or taking birth control pills. Wait for at least three months after giving birth before trying this treatment.
Bedridden people should not undergo the procedure, but you might still be eligible if you’ve had a blood clot in the past. However, your eligibility will depend on the cause and extremity affected by the condition. A vascular specialist will review your medical history to determine whether you’re a good candidate for the procedure.
Sclerotherapy Treatment In Kansas City, MO
If you’re searching for sclerotherapy treatment near you, look no further than Missouri Vein Specialists today. Our very own Dr. Scott Darling is a triple-board-certified vein doctor who can perform a thorough assessment of your condition and design an effective treatment plan. If Dr. Darling finds you are a good candidate for this procedure, you can rest easy in his capable hands.
To schedule an appointment, contact our clinic at 816-792-3400 or request an appointment online. We look forward to serving you.