Sclerotherapy is a non-surgical medical procedure that is used to treat varicose and spider veins. It involves injecting a solution directly into damaged veins which forces the blood to reroute through healthier veins. After a sclerotherapy procedure, the treated veins will fade within a few weeks to a few months. Some cases may even require several treatments.
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Sclerotherapy is considered a cosmetic procedure. It can improve symptoms such as aches, swelling, burning, and night cramps caused by varicose or spider veins. Sclerotherapy can also treat blood and lymph vessel disorders. But not everyone who has varicose or spider veins, or other conditions, can be treated with sclerotherapy. So, it is important to discuss your symptoms and concerns with your doctor to find out if this procedure is necessary since other treatments may be more affordable and less invasive.
When should someone consider sclerotherapy
- If there is a rash near the veins.
- Your legs become sore and feet heavy.
- The veins are painful.
- The skin on your legs or feet are patchy and dry.
Sclerotherapy has been used since the 1930’s, but the techniques have improved in recent decades. Studies show that 5.0-80% of injected veins may be eliminated with each session. The most common areas varicose veins develop is on your legs and feet. Some can even cause discomfort if they are located deeper under the skin. Spider veins are smaller in size and are usually closer to the surface of the skin. They appear red, blue, or purple in color. Depending on the size of the damaged veins, sclerotherapy can treat varicose and spider veins in the areas they appear:
- Face (side of nose).
What should I do before sclerotherapy?
If you are scheduled for sclerotherapy procedure, your health care provider may recommend you follow a few rules prior to:
- Do not take ibuprofen and aspirin. This will reduce the risk of bruising.
- Avoid applying lotions or shaving your legs. This will help to decrease irritation.
- Do not take anti-inflammatory medication for 48-72 hours prior to.
- Purchase compression socks or stockings to wear after the procedure. These will help support healthy blood circulation.
How long does it take to recover from sclerotherapy?
Sclerotherapy procedure has little to no down time which means most people are able to return to their everyday activities immediately. Staying active helps reduce the chance of getting clots while keeping in mind to avoid sunlight, hot baths, swimming pools, saunas, and the beach for at least 48 hours after the procedure.
Do varicose and spider veins come back after sclerotherapy?
Sclerotherapy can remove varicose and spider veins, but it cannot prevent new ones from forming. Since you can’t do much about family history or age, developing a healthier and active lifestyle can delay or reduce the chances of getting varicose and spider veins, at least for as long as possible.
Helpful tips to delay or reduce varicose or spider veins
- Avoid long periods of sitting or standing. This makes it harder for the blood to travel in the leg veins against gravity.
- Wear compression stockings or socks to help keep your veins in the right position.
- Live a healthy lifestyle to prevent more damage to the veins.
- Exercise regularly improves your circulation.
- Stay hydrated.
- Keep blood pressure under control.
- Sleep on your left side if you’re pregnant to reduce the pressure that is put on the veins in the pelvic area.
If you are dealing with varicose or spider veins that are uncomfortable and making you feel self-conscious, contact Dr. Corwin Thomas at CT Cardio today. His many years of experience reflects how qualified he is to assess your vein problem and formulate a treatment plan. He will always have your best interest at heart. Call the office at 337-234-3163 to schedule an appointment, or visit our website to learn more about the various services we can offer you.