Sclerotherapy is a procedure that treats varicose or spider veins, blood vessel malformations, and disorders of the lymphatic system. It’s usually recommended for cosmetic purposes to improve veins' appearance, but it can resolve symptoms such as night cramps, swelling, and aches. If your dermatologist has encouraged you to consider this treatment, this guide can help you understand the series of steps involved.
How It Works
Sclerotherapy, which has been used by medical professionals for almost 90 years, is performed through an injection directly into the vein. A salt-based solution stimulates your blood vessel, causing the lining to collapse and blood to clot. The vessel eventually becomes scar tissue that fades from view.
Patients should consult with a physician to verify they will benefit from the treatment. The number of injections you will need will vary based on your condition. Some people only need one procedure while others undergo sclerotherapy several times to achieve results.
How to Prepare
Your doctor might advise you to temporarily stop taking medications such as aspirin or ibuprofen, as they can thin your blood and cause bruising. In addition, taking an oral supplement containing Vitamin E can encourage bruising.
Avoid applying lotion and oils, and refrain from shaving the day before the procedure. The salt solution can irritate the skin on freshly shaved legs. Also, minimize your exposure to the sun before and after treatments. UV rays can cause spots or darkening to form at the injection site.
What to Expect Afterward
The treatment generally only takes half an hour, and you can expect to drive yourself home and resume normal activities afterward. Doctors recommend wearing compression stockings for a few days to prevent blood clots from developing as your spider veins begin to collapse. Your veins might be sensitive for a few days, so consider wearing loose clothing, such as shorts.
The team of dermatologists at the office of Lauren A. Daman, MD, PC, in Hartford, CT, specializes in sclerotherapy to treat varicose and spider veins. They use state-of-the-art technology to complete procedures and provide results you’ll feel confident about. Call (860) 246-3533 to request an appointment or visit their website to learn more about their services today.