For people with varicose veins and spider veins sclerotherapy has proven to be the best, most efficient solution. It is a medical procedure during which a solution is injected into the vein in question. It irritates the blood vessel lining and causes it to swell and stick. Over time, the vessel will turn into an invisible scar. Sclerotherapy has been used since 1930 and has around 50 to 80 percent success rate during the first procedure. While some patients, less than 10% of them, may not respond to the solution, there are other methods to get rid of these nuisances like Endovenous Laser Therapy.
Before and After Sclerotherapy at Beverly Hills Vein Institute: The Procedure Explained
Before the doctor can perform sclerotherapy, you need to book an initial consultation so our doctors can determine if you are suitable for the procedure. Women in pregnancy as well as those breastfeeding, along with people with a history of blood clot problems are not eligible for sclerotherapy. Pregnant women usually have to wait a few months before doctors can perform sclerotherapy to get rid of their varicose or spider veins.
Before the Procedure
There are several medications you have to avoid before the procedure. Taking Tetracycline and Minocin, both antibiotics, is known to cause a staining of the skin if consumed up to 10 days before sclerotherapy. Try to avoid these or ask your doctor for an alternative. The same goes for aspirin and ibuprofen, anti-inflammatory drugs because they may interfere with the solution used in sclerotherapy and even increase bleeding. Instead you can use Tylenol, but it is still best to consult with your physician. Finally, prednisone can decrease the effectiveness of the chemical used in sclerotherapy so it should be avoided prior to the procedure.
During the Procedure
Some patients feel mild discomfort as the needle penetrates their skin. Rest assured that the needles used in sclerotherapy are fine and not at all intimidating. Apart from that, some patients may experience a feeling of cramping up to two minutes if the solution is injected into a bigger vein. The whole procedure lasts between 30 and 40 minutes.
After the Procedure
Recovery from sclerotherapy is almost instantaneous. You will be able to drive yourself home immediately after the visit to Beverly Hills Vein Institute and resume your usual activities. You will have to wear holsters or compression socks for support, as they compress the treated veins. Make sure you wear the stockings the doctor advised and not over-the-counter ones, as they may not provide adequate compression. You should avoid using aspirin and ibuprofen for reasons similar to why you shouldn’t use them before the procedure.
Are there any Side Effects of Sclerotherapy?
It is true that some patients may experience side-effects after the procedure, but in the majority of cases they are nothing to worry about. These can include larger veins becoming lumpy or red, raised areas appearing around the site where the solution was injected. Additionally, brown lines may form around the puncture point, caused by iron that escapes the injected vein and bruises can appear around the same area. In most cases these symptoms disappear in a few days, up to a few months. If you have any questions about any of these side-effects do not hesitate to contact us, but know that these largely cosmetic nuisances are a small inconvenience compared to having to live with varicose or spider veins.