Schlerotherapy is a minimally invasive procedure done by our aesthetic specialist to treat uncomplicated spider veins and reticular veins on the legs. The procedure involves the injection of a solution into the affected areas to remove the unwanted and unsightly veins.
Schlerotherapy has been the “Gold Standard” of treatment for spider veins since the 1920s! Injection of a solution is done to sclerose the unwanted veins and improve the legs’ aesthetic appearance . As the vascular laser technology as improved, some prefer these treatments to the micro-injection procedures, if the vessels are not complicated or too large. The best method or combination of methods can be determined at a consultation.
ARE YOU A CANDIDATE FOR SCHLEROTHERAPY ?
Prior to treatment , your medical history and evaluation of the affected area and the surrounding areas, will be evaluated to see if schlerotherapy or laser vein treatments are appropriate.
Spider veins can appear for a variety of conditions such as pregnancy, menopause or other hormonal fluctuations or valvular incompetence. They can also occur from prolonged standing or sitting with bent or crossed legs or with obesity.
If varicose veins are present, then a referral to a vascular surgeon will be deemed appropriate before treating for the cosmetic spider veins. Varicose veins are generally the larger, darker veins that bulge from the skin and may appear cord-like .
In contrast, spider veins can be treated with less invasive procedures. These veins will appear as very small , thread-like vessels and may be either red or blue. Spider veins found on the face, will more likely be treated with the vascular laser.
Reticular veins are the blue-green veins found beneath the surface of the skin and are more likely to be the “feeder” veins. These too may be successfully treated with injection schlerotherapy or vascular laser therapy.
THE BENEFITS OF SCHLEROTHERAPY TREATMENTS
Besides the unsightly appearance and embarrassment of spider veins on the legs or face, some people report discomfort from spider veins. This is a safe, minimally invasive solution with little need for attention during recovery.
WHAT TO EXPECT DURING A SCHLEROTHERAPY TREATMENT
A typical schlerotherapy session will be approximately 30-45 minutes. Different methods of compression are recommended depending on the size of the treated vein. For most spider veins, professional tape will be applied for a gentle compression to avoid additional bleeding or bruising and reduce the risk of a deep vein thrombosis. This will be left in place for 48-72 hours to improve the outcome. If larger reticular or complex veins are treated, then support hose may be advised for the 3-5 days following treatment.
Bruises may result around the treatment area but will disappear within the week. A tan or brownish pigment can persist for up to 6-8 weeks with larger veins. Small clots at the injection site are harmless and can removed in the office with ease to facilitate healing.
Patients generally are encouraged to resume normal activities immediately, especially, walking. It might be advised to refrain from strenuous activities involving the lower extremities for 24 hours . It is best to refrain from sunbathing, saunas, long plane flights in addition to heavy exercise for 72 hours following treatment.
Although results may not be completely apparent immediately, the results will continue to improve for 8-12 weeks after each session and a 60-80% improvement can be expected.