Sclerotherapy for spider veins is a simple, effective and safe method to treat telangiectasias and small varicose veins in the legs. This method has been safely used for many years and some of the key benefits are that this procedure is done as outpatient on site without disruption to everyday activities.
The procedure involves the injection of a sclerosant, Aethoxysklerol into the vein using a very fine needle. Each injection treats a small area and therefore depending on the extent of your spider veins multiple injections may be required in a single session. Sclerotherapy irritates the wall of the veins and causes collapse and shut down of the veins. The effect on the walls of the veins causes them to gradually fade over the next 8 to 12 weeks.
Sclerotherapy with Aethoxysklerol is generally very effective and in around 80% of cases the procedure achieves very good results although patients may require additional sessions to obtain these results. However, in some cases the incompetent veins can be very resistant to treatment and may not respond effectively to sclerotherapy. This is not a reflection of how the treatment was performed but merely due to the resistant incompetent veins.
It is impossible to eradicate every last vein but sclerotherapy should cause the majority of spider veins to fade or disappear. This treatment does not prevent the future appearance of new veins that are related to progression of the venous disease.
ON THE DAY OF PROCEDURE
Wear comfortable clothing. Take regular medications. (Notify Mr Bell if you are taking any blood thinners such as Aspirin or Warfarin)
Compression stockings will need to be worn for one week, day and night (removed for showering).
AFTER THE PROCEDURE
Walking is recommended for at least 40 minutes each day. Strenuous activity such as jogging and aerobics should be avoided for the first week. Minor bruising, irritation, swelling or tenderness may occur after treatment. This is normal and will resolve within the next two weeks.
Brown pigmentation can occur along the course of the injected vein. This is caused by the release of iron pigments from extravasated red blood cells. This is usually temporary and clears naturally over time although in up to 5% of patients pigmentation may continue after 12 months. Laser therapy can be effective in removing this pigmentation in about 50% of people.
This is the development of a small network of fine capillaries after treatment and this can occur in up to 30% of patients. The incidence can be reduced to 5% with the wearing of compression after treatment. Telangiectatic matting usually resolves spontaneously over 3-12 months. It may persist longer than 1 year in less than 1% of people.
Deep Vein Thrombosis
People with varicose veins are more susceptible to deep vein thrombosis. These blood clots can also form in the deep veins as a result of treatment of your varicose veins. This is extremely rare, occurring in less than 2% of patients, especially if patients follow instructions regarding stockings and walking.