Sclerotherapy is a simple, effective treatment for unwanted spider veins. A solution is injected into the spider veins with a fine needle, causing them to collapse. Over time, damaged veins are absorbed naturally by the body and will fade.
What is the difference between varicose and spider veins?
Varicose veins appear as enlarged, rope-like veins in the legs. They often are a sign of underlying venous disease, specifically, venous insufficiency. When a vein becomes “varicose,” its internal valves malfunction. It is often thought that varicose veins are simply a cosmetic issue and are synonymous with spider veins. However, if left untreated, varicose veins can lead to serious medical issues including phlebitis (vein inflammation), thrombosis (blood clots) and even skin ulcers. Typical symptoms of varicose veins might include heaviness, cramps, swelling, itching, throbbing and fatigue.
Spider veins are the fine, red, blue or purple veins close to the skin surface. Although not painful, spider veins can blemish the appearance of your legs. These dilated blood vessels often form sunburst-like patterns. While some have the appearance of a spider web, others may resemble a tree with branches. Depending on factors such as lifestyle, health issues and physical appearance, spider veins will look different on everyone.
What to expect from your treatment
Your treatment plan is customized for your specific needs. Every patient’s condition is unique. Some patients may require more than one session, and each session can consist of more than one injection.
Patients can resume normal activities immediately following the procedure. A surgical support stocking will be required for a few days after your treatment. You will be given a prescription or can purchase a stocking through our office. We ask that you avoid direct sun exposure for four to six weeks to minimize pigment changes to your skin. Improvements can be noticed, on average, six to eight weeks after treatment. We typically schedule a follow-up appointment four weeks after the procedure.
Side effects are nearly non-existent, with the exception of minor bruising and pigmentation at the injection sites coupled with slight itching. Bruising typically disappears within one to two weeks. Although pigmentation almost always fades, it may take several months.
How to prepare for your treatment