Sclerotherapy can be used for treating small to medium sized Varicose Veins. It involves the injection of an FDA-approved solution into diseased veins with the intent to create scar tissue inside the vein that will seal it closed. The veins then shrink and gradually disappear. The solution used is safe and painless. Anesthesia and sedation are not needed. For deeper varicosities, ultrasound is often used to “guide” the injections into the underlying diseased veins below the surface of the skin. This allows the medication to be administered to precise locations safely and accurately. Sclerotherapy can be done during post-procedure visits to eliminate any diseased veins that were too small or too deep to remove during EVLT. Thus, EVLT and Sclerotherapy are often combined, ensuring that all the diseased veins are eliminated.
Types of Sclerotherapy
- Sclerosing Injections: Eligible patients are given multiple sclerosing injections (dilute sclerosant) that shrink and dissolve spider veins over a period of time by closing the “feeder veins”. Most patients require up to two treatment sessions separated by several weeks to significantly improve the appearance of leg veins and prevent recurrence on a treated area. A compression stocking or bandage must be worn up to two weeks after each treatment and patients are encouraged to walk daily to help speed up the healing process.
- Microfoam Sclerosing with Ultrasound Guidance: Patients with large spider and varicose veins (including the great and small saphenous veins) can greatly benefit from the microfoam sclerosing procedure. During the procedure, ultrasound is used to visualize underlying veins so a physician can deliver the injections using a pair of syringes or medical pumps – one with sclerosant (sodium tetradecyl sulfate or polidocanol), and the other with gas (carbon dioxide) thus creating a foam. This process increases the surface area of the drug and is ideal for longer and larger veins.
- Laser Scleratherapy: is a completely non-invasive procedure where pulses of light direct energy into leg veins causing the blood within to coagulate and change to a solid or semisolid state. The vein eventually breaks up and is reabsorbed back into the body where blood flow is then redirected to deeper veins below the skins surface. Although no compression stockings are needed after laser treatment, a slightly raised, red reaction in the treated area is normal and typically resolves in one to two days. Patients should protect treated areas from direct sunlight, extreme heat, and avoid high impact exercise. The Vein Center at Johns Creek recommends one to two treatments for visible results in as soon as two to six weeks after treatment.
After the Procedure
Sclerotherapy is an outpatient procedure using local anesthesia (topical numbing) which allows patients to leave following treatment. Compression garments must be worn for one to three weeks (not applicable for laser procedures) and are designed for long term wear. After two weeks, a follow-up visit is required so that a physician can monitor the recovery process and check for complications. Complications, while rare, include allergic reactions to the Sclerotherapy agent, hyperpigmentation and redness around the treatment area. If any of these symptoms are present prior to a follow up visit patients are encouraged to contact The Vein Center at Johns Creek immediately.
The Vein Center at Johns Creek
At the Vein Center at Johns Creek, Dr. William H. Johnson, MD and his staff are devoted to offering the best quality vein treatment in a tranquil, relaxed, comfortable and professional setting. As well, the Vein Center at Johns Creek provides various options to fit your needs such as sclerotherapy and ambulatory phlebectomy.
If you have any questions or concerns about leg vein problems like Varicose Veins or Spider Veins, feel free to make an appointment or contact the staff. For easy availability, Dr. William H. Johnson is located in Suwanee, GA. He also serves the surrounding areas like Duluth, Lilburn, Alpharetta, Dunwoody, Chamblee, Doraville, Roswell, Sugar Hill, Buford, and Duluth.
All information within this web page is not meant to take the place of professional medical advice. Be sure to make an appointment with Dr. Johnson or a specialist if you have any concerns.