ONE SCLEROTHERAPY TREATMENT AT A TIME
Summer is nearly here and many of us are increasing the time spent in the gym to get ready to show toned arms and legs. But what about those unsightly veins? Have you ever heard of Sclerotherapy treatments? They are very popular at my practice; in particular when the warmer days arrive my patients really love to show the results!
Sclerotherapy treats spider veins, occasionally varicose veins, and venous malformations. Sclerotherapy, which takes its name from a Greek word meaning “hardening,” is a method of treating enlarged veins by injecting a sclerosing agent into the vein. Injection sclerotherapy may eliminate the need for an invasive surgical procedure.
If you are interested in undergoing sclerotherapy treatments but are not sure whether or not it the right option for you? Please phone my rooms on 011 954 0070/3 and I will happily guide you.
If you have questions about sclerotherapy treatments or any other procedures, feel free to leave a comment here or on my social media platforms and I will get back to you as soon as I can. Also, please visit my website by clicking here.
You may already know this but just to clarify things:
→Spider veins are those tiny purple and red blood vessels found most commonly on the thighs or lower legs of men and women. They are hereditary and can form anywhere on the leg, from the top of the thigh to the ankle, and even on the face.
→Varicose veins are larger veins that usually appear raised with a bluish colour and can become quite painful.
Did you know?! Although spider veins and varicose veins carry blood, they are not part of the venous valve system so do not worry, these veins do not have a purpose other than to make you feel self-conscious! Furthermore, sclerotherapy is not bad for your circulation. The treatment eliminates veins that are no longer useful, eliminating pain and improving the cosmetic appearance.
Why do we have spider veins in the first place?
Well, no one really knows why spider veins occur. Like The genetics factor explains some cases as it seems that certain families are unfortunately predisposed but other factors, such as the natural process of ageing, physical falls, long periods of standing or sitting, as well as pregnancy and hormones could also be responsible. Exercising regularly and maintaining a healthy BMI could help prevent the occurrence of spider veins and varicose veins but sometimes, despite their best efforts, my patients cannot be rid of them.
During your sclerotherapy procedure, I inject the troublesome veins with the sclerosant agent. The agent that I use is called Aethoxysklerol. Upon injection, the substance causes the lining of the blood vessel to break up and also stops the flow of blood through that vein – the body absorbs and disposes the treated cells. The procedure is done in my clinic and usually does not take longer than 30 minutes, but it does depend on how many varicose veins are treated and how big they are.
→What about the pain?
Sclerotherapy is not painful, it is a tiny prick. Occasionally there may be a feeling of discomfort in some areas of the leg (this varies from person to person).
The legs may feel slightly tender for the first few days following treatment. An anti-inflammatory drug such as Ibroprofen is often helpful. Wearing compression garments and walking may aid in the recovery and in achieving the best results.
→How many sclerotherapy sessions are needed?
I will only be able to give you an exact number once I have assessed your veins. Indeed, the number of treatments you will need to clear or improve the condition differs from one patient to another, depending on the extent of varicose and spider veins present. It will also depend on the extent of improvement desired.
Usually, about 50-70% of the treated vessels will be permanently resolved which means that most of my patients require a few treatments to completely correct their targeted veins. On average, three to four sessions are needed. My patients experience 50 to 90 percent improvement after several treatments but then again, this highly depends on each patient’s unique characteristics.
However, new veins may appear overtime, even after you have finished all your sessions. So in order to guarantee optimal long term results and counteract avoid the appearance of new spider veins, touch-up treatments may be required every year or so. But this is something we can discuss during your consultation.
RECOVERY AND RESULTS
What you should expect after your procedure…
Usually, the veins take six to eight weeks to disappear completely.
After the procedure, pressure is applied over the veins to prevent blood return when you stand up. You can then return home wearing a pressure dressing for a few days. This is to maintain the pressure to keep the treated veins closed, reduce bruising and promote healing. Bruises around the treated areas usually disappear after the first week. Sclerotherapy generally does not require any recovery period and you will be encouraged to walk immediately after the procedure but you should take it easy for the first 24 hours post-procedure and avoid any strenuous exercise.
We will have to wait for at least 3 weeks before you can come back to my practice and undergo another series of injections in the same site. However, different sites can be injected sooner.
You absolutely need to avoid exposing the treated areas to the sun for the first two weeks after your sclerotherapy procedures. This is to avoid developing brown spots during healing. But I will make sure to give you all the post-procedure guidelines during the consultation.
I hope that this article has helped you understand how sclerotherapy can treat spider veins and varicose veins but if you have a question, please do not hesitate, either leave a message right here or call my practice on 011 954 0070/3 and we will be more than happy to help you.