Spider veins are seen as a small cluster of unsightly veins that may appear red, purple, or blue. Spider veins are the smallest type of varicose vein and are usually only a cosmetic concern since they are generally medically insignificant. But in some people, they may be painful. They most commonly appear on the thigh, calf, and ankle. They lie very close to the surface of the skin. Although they are connected to the larger venous system they are not essential to it. It is estimated that about 50 percent of adult females are affected with spider veins.
At AMISurgery, we offer several treatments for spider vein removal.
Sclerotherapy is the process through which a chemical solution known as a sclerosing agent is injected at several points along the spider and varicose veins. Sclerotherapy is commonly performed with a concentrated saline solution, although other chemical solutions or special foam may be used as well.
The agent irritates the lining of the veins, which in combination with compression after treatment causes the vein walls to collapse. Over time, the veins will be absorbed by the body, restoring a smoother, more youthful appearance. Like other vein removal therapies, multiple treatments are usually required to achieve the desired results, but sclerotherapy can reduce the appearance of most spider veins and some small varicose veins significantly.
The laser is used as a second line of treatment or as a clean-up procedure after sclerotherapy when the remaining veins are too small to inject. After treatment care is similar to sclerotherapy as noted below.
AFTER YOUR SCLEROTHERAPY/LASER TREATMENT FOR SPIDER VEINS
After your treatment, you will be asked to wear prescription grade stockings to help keep pressure on the veins for seven days. This will reduce bruising and help to keep the treated veins closed. Bruises around the treated areas usually disappear after the first week. A tan or brownish pigment may persist for six to eight weeks when larger veins are involved. Occasionally, small clots can develop at the injection site. These are not a cause for concern and may be removed to allow healing to progress
Patients are generally encouraged to avoid prolonged standing for the first three days and must refrain from vigorous exercises or activities. Walking is encouraged. Although your final results may not be apparent for several months, most patients experience a 60% to 80% improvement with the first few weeks.
HOW MANY TREATMENTS ARE NEEDED TO REMOVE SPIDER VEINS?
Complete correction of the treated area is not expected on the first treatment. On average, three treatments are necessary for complete correction. In most cases, about 50 – 70% of the treated vessels will be gone for good. However, new veins may appear and additional treatments are generally required for optimum results. These treatments may occur in three week intervals.
HOW LONG WILL SCLEROTHERAPY LAST?
Sclerotherapy usually lasts from two to five years, depending on the size and age un casino en ligne of the veins. After this period of time, most people begin to develop new veins, but the previously treated veins do not reappear.
RISKS AND SIDE EFFECTS ASSOCIATED WITH SCLEROTHERAPY
- Most Common Side-Effects – The veins may be tender to the touch after treatment, and an uncomfortable sensation may run along the vein route
- Pain, burning, blister formation, and stinging sensation at the treatment site
- Scar formation at the treatment site
- Poor cosmetic outcome or re-occurrence of vessel at the treatment site
- Infection at the treatment site
- Temporary discomfort
- Bruising is very common and to be expected. Some patients complain of an itchy sensation after treatment, which is also very normal. Trapped blood may cause a discoloration, which can be flushed out, although this may result in hyperpigmentation for up to one year.
- Skin Ulceration – In rare cases a blister may form, open, and become ulcerated. Healing occurs slowly over a few months. After healing, this will usually leave a scar.
- Transient Hyperpigmentation – Patients who have had ultrasound guided sclerotherapy may notice a discoloration after treatment. This discoloration is almost always transient and will resolve in approximately 3 months. In rare instances this darkening of the skin may persist for up to one year.
- Allergic Reaction – Very rarely, a patient may have an allergic reaction to the sclerosing agent. Allergic reactions may be severe and/or life threatening. The risk of this is greater in patients who have a history of allergies.
- Deep Vein Thrombosis – Deep vein thrombosis is very rare complication; the dangers of deep vein thrombosis include the possibility of pulmonary embolus (a blood clot carried to the lungs) and post phlebitic syndrome, resulting in a permanent swelling of the leg.
- Nodularity – Nodularity at the site of vein removal may persist for up to a year. This occurs when there are pieces of the vein that remain in the body and have scarred down and become hard. With time, the body will absorb and soften these areas but some may persist.
- Telanglectatic Matting – This term refers to the development of tiny new blood vessels in the treated area. This temporary phenomenon occurs two (2) to four (4) weeks after treatment and usually resolves within four (4) to six (6) months. It occurs in up to eighteen percent (18%) of women on estrogen therapy and in two percent (2%) to four percent (4%) of all patients.
- Ankle Swelling – Ankle swelling may occur after treatment of blood vessels in the foot or ankle. It usually resolves in a few days and is lessened by wearing the prescribed support stockings.
- Phlebitis – Phlebitis is a very rare complication seen in approximately one (1) out of every one thousand (1,000) patients treated for varicose veins greater than three (3) to four (4) millimeters in diameter. The possible dangers of phlebitis include a pulmonary embolus or blood clot, which travels to the lungs and post-phlebitis syndrome, which can result in permanent swelling of the legs.