Sclerotherapy (Spider Vein Treatment)

What is Sclerotherapy?

SPIDER VEINS, known medically as telangiectasia, are dilated skin capillaries and are frequently an inherited tendency, although they may be brought on by sun exposure, trauma, aging or prolonged standing. They may be red (arterial capillaries) or blue (venous capillaries) and most people have both types. The micro-injection technique consists of injecting a solution directly into these tiny capillaries, using very tiny needles. This irritates the inner lining of the capillaries so they cease to carry blood and the body slowly replaces them with scar tissue, without harming the circulation. Several injections may be needed for a specific area of telangectasias. During the spider vein treatment procedure, a sclerosing solution is injected into the vein through a micro-needle. The sclerosing solution causes the vein to blanch (turn white), then gradually disappear.

How long will the spider vein treatment take?

A typical spider vein removal treatment may last for 15 to 20 minutes and consist of multiple injections.

How many spider vein treatments will I need?

Research has shown that 2 treatments can produce a 60-75% improvement in the long-term clearance of unwanted leg veins.

What spider vein treatment tips should I follow prior to and after the procedure?

TREATMENT TIPS: Do not take any aspirin or aspirin – containing products for one week prior to the procedure. Do not shave your legs or use moisturizers on your legs for 24 hours before the procedure. Bring shorts to wear during the procedure. You will be wearing compression hose afterwards, so wear a long dress or baggy pants. We can help you get fitted for these. The best results are obtained when this hosiery is worn almost continuously for the first 48 hours and as much as possible for 2-6 weeks following treatment. Avoid heat, prolonged standing or strenuous exercises such as aerobics for the first 48 hours after treatment. During this period, try to elevate your legs while sitting. Your legs will look worse for the first week; then they will gradually improve.

What is sclerotherapy recovery like?

Temporary muscle cramps or soreness may occur during the first 24-48 hours. Heavy duty Jobb Stockings will be prescribed for you to wear the first 48-72 hours to help keep pressure on the veins to improve your outcome. You will be asked to wear compression hose every day for the next 2 to 4 weeks, after the initial treatment, for increased clearance of veins. 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.

What is the chance of reoccurence?

This treatment does not prevent any new telangiectasia from occurring. The same processes which cause their changes, i.e. deep varicose veins, childbirth, long periods of standing, hereditary predisposition, etc are still at play and are more than likely to cause new problems.

For additional information we encourage you to schedule a private free consultation with our skin specialist by calling 360-459-1700. Olympia Dermatology is the leading dermatology center serving Olympia, Lacey, Tumwater, DuPont, Steilacoom, Centralia, Chehalis, Aberdeen, Hoquiam, Shelton and the South Sound region.