What Is Sclerotherapy?
Sclerotherapy is a medical procedure at Georgia Dermatology Partners in Braselton and Snellville, GA, used to treat unsightly leg and spider veins. A solution, known as a sclerosant, is injected directly into the damaged veins, causing the veins to collapse and gradually fade away. Sclerotherapy has been used on patients across the world since the 1930’s and remains the primary effective treatment for spider veins.
Causes Of Spider Veins
The exact cause of spider veins is still unclear but several factors can influence the onset. Such factors include: family history, hormonal changes, such as puberty and pregnancy, leg injury, prolonged standing, and being overweight. Spider veins on the nose or cheeks may be triggered by excessive sun exposure. Sun protections is important to limit the number of spider veins on the face.
What Are The Benefits Of Sclerotherapy?
No one likes any of the signs of aging, from the appearance of wrinkles to skin that seems looser by the day. But right at the top of the list is the appearance of spider veins. These clusters of purple, blue, and red squiggly lines coursing about just under your surface skin can make a woman vow to never wear a swimsuit or shorts again. And that’s not really a tenable way to live in sunny, sultry Georgia. But we can make them go away with sclerotherapy at Georgia Dermatology Partners. Then you’ll be happy to accept that offer to go waterskiing or to that neighborhood pool party.
Sclerotherapy is remarkably effective at removing spider veins. Plus, it’s a simple treatment that only takes a few minutes.
Is Sclerotherapy Done In-Office?
Yes, this is a simple procedure. Nurse Wenner uses a tiny needle, and the injections are very shallow and short in duration. A number of spider veins can be treated in a single short session in any of our four Georgia Dermatology Partners locations.
Sclerotherapy Procedure: What To Expect
- A treatment session usually takes about 15 to 45 minutes.
- No anesthesia is needed and most patients experience only minimal pain and a mild burning sensation.
- The skin is cleaned with an antiseptic solution and the sclerosing solution is then injected into the superficial veins with a very fine needle.
How Should I Prepare Before Sclerotherapy?
You need to stop taking aspirin, blood thinners, or anti-inflammatory medications for one week before your appointment. These can exacerbate bruising. You should also be sure you have compression stockings in your size so that you can wear for five days after your appointment. These should be medium compression (20 to 30 Hg).
How Many Sclerotherapy Treatments Does It Take For Spider Vein Removal?
The number of treatments varies with each individual depending on the number and size of vessels. Usually, significant improvements can be seen within one to two sessions. Sclerotherapy is a process and may take time to heal. This should not discourage you from treatment, as results can be extremely satisfying and dramatic. Left untreated veins will get worse and generate more veins. Treatment can help you gain control of the problem and minimize future progression. *Treatments done here at Georgia Dermatology Partners are done for cosmetic reasons only.
Are My Sclerotherapy Results Permanent?
The veins removed through sclerotherapy with Nurse Wenner are gone for good. The closed off veins will not open back up. Immediately following your session your body will begin the process of absorbing the now-unused vein. Of course, that doesn’t mean if you developed spider veins before that you won’t develop new spider veins moving forward. That will remain a possibility. If you’re in an occupation where you must stand most of the time, such as being a flight attendant or in retail, you can help to prevent spider veins from forming by wearing compression hose during your daily work.
Recovery After Sclerotherapy
After your treatments, Nurse Wenner will instruct you to wear compression hose during waking hours for a week or two (depending upon how many veins you had injected). Compression hose apply pressure that improves your body’s ability to immediately get to work absorbing and removing the closed off veins.
You can walk and return to moderate forms of exercise immediately, but you should wait about one week to return to more strenuous exercise.
Is The Sclerotherapy Treatment Safe?
Sclerotherapy is a very safe procedure. The most common negative reactions to sclerotherapy may include some slight pain, redness, or bruising around the injected veins. Spider Vein removal is a non-surgical procedure and as a result does not pose the risks that may come with surgery. On some occasions small branches of blood vessels around the vein being treated may appear, however, these vessels will usually disappear on their own.
Possible Side Effects of Sclerotherapy
Sclerotherapy has been used for over 90 years, and it has proven to be very safe and effective. There is a very low risk of any reaction to the sclerosant solution. Tens of millions of sclerosant injections have been given and continue to be the method of choice for treating spider veins.
Minor issues may be some redness at the injection sites and slight irritation, but that’s about it.
Sclerotherapy Before & After
Is Sclerotherapy Covered By insurance?
Most insurance companies consider sclerotherapy to remove spider veins as a cosmetic procedure. They don’t deem it to be medically necessary. For that reason, these procedures are rarely covered by health insurance. At Georgia Dermatology Partners we do offer CareCredit financing, but these are not expensive treatments.
Why Choose Georgia Dermatology Partners For Your Sclerotherapy Treatment?
Gail Wenner, RN has been treating spider veins at Georgia Dermatology Partners since 2005. She first started treating veins in 1994 at a vein center in Atlanta, that was dedicated to treating varicose and spider veins. There she received extensive training on understanding the complexity of veins and learned the art of performing leg vein injections.
She has successfully treated thousands of patients. Through her experience, she has recognized the importance of treating the problem at its source, in order to achieve an optimal aesthetic outcome and slow the progressive nature of the disease.
From time to time she meets someone that says “I have had treatment before and it didn’t work, is this something that can really work?” She welcomes the question and loves the challenge of proving that treatment does really work. She is passionate about what she does and welcomes the opportunity to meet with you, and help get you started on the road to getting rid of your leg and spider veins.