Once the medical condition of venous insufficiency has been ruled out, Sclerotherapy is the treatment of choice for cosmetic spider veins. A tiny needle is used to inject the veins with a medical solution that irritates the lining of the vein. In response, the veins collapse and are reabsorbed becoming much less visible on the surface of your skin. The procedure is performed in the doctor’s office and usually causes only minimal discomfort. Bruising may occur after sclerotherapy but typically disappears within 1-2 weeks. Although hyper-pigmentation is a relatively uncommon side effect and it almost always fades in a couple of weeks, it can last for several months. Scarring and other complications are rare.
You may need anywhere from one to several sclerotherapy sessions for any vein region for optimum results. Depending on the type and number of veins being treated you may have several injections per 30 minute session. Generally, normal activities can be resumed the same day as sclerotherapy, although you should be careful to wear a quality sun screen and wear the medically prescribed support stockings as prescribed by your physician to assist in resolution of the problematic veins. In the event that venous insufficiency is suspected, sclerotherapy may be postponed to address the more pressing issue of that medical condition.
Spider veins are not a definitive indicator of venous insufficiency and may appear on a patient with healthy vein valves. Only an ultrasound diagnosis can determine the presence of this disease. If venous insufficiency exists, your physician may choose to treat this condition prior to the treatment of spider veins.
What results can be expected?
With the evaluation and treatment methods available today, spider and varicose veins can be treated at a level of effectiveness and patient safety previously unattainable, although, a 100% resolution of all visual veins is considered unrealistic by medical experts. Regardless of which treatment method is used, success largely depends on careful assessment of the problem by a knowledgeable and trained physician, a comprehensive treatment plan, and ultimately the compliance of the patient. There are many underlying causes of varicose and spider veins, therefore, successful treatment of a particular vein problem does not necessarily prevent the occurrence of new venous concerns. An open relationship with your vein specialist where you can communicate your results and concerns of your vein issues, is key in the long-term success of your venous treatments.