The most common problematic leg veins are varicose veins and spider veins. While they may not be a major health problem, they are unappealing and may affect your lifestyle, especially if you like short clothing in the summer. If they are not treated, they can cause problems in the future.
Fortunately, there is a solution so you can have clear, smooth legs again. Sclerotherapy is a non-invasive treatment that causes the damaged veins to collapse so they can be absorbed by the surrounding tissue.
The sclerotherapy procedure involves injecting a solution into the affected vein to coagulate the blood and irritate the vein’s walls. The solution is called a sclerosant and is often a hypertonic saline or sotradecol solution. This is the preferred treatment for smaller varicose veins and spider veins.
After the injection is given, which may take from 15 to 30 minutes, our specialist may put pressure on the vein to stop any blood from returning to the vein. You may also be asked to wear compression stockings for a few days or weeks depending on the size of the vein being treated. Once the vein is closed, your blood will naturally flow through other healthy veins.
For larger varicose veins, the sclerosant may be administered through a catheter that can be guided with the help of duplex ultrasound. It all depends on your unique situation. After the treatment, there is no recovery time required. You can walk immediately, but should avoid strenuous exercise for a few days.
Some of the symptoms of leg vein problems are aching, burning and throbbing in the legs as well as cramping and restlessness. There are several causes for leg vein problems, and heredity is the main one. Other causes include:
• Obesity – Being overweight puts pressure on the legs, causing the veins to overwork and gradually become weak.
• Long periods of sitting or standing – Jobs that require long periods of standing, such as a nurse or a teacher, may cause the tiny valves in the leg veins that help push the blood to the heart to become weak. The same happens when you sit too long without taking a break to walk around every hour.
• Hormonal changes, such as birth control pills, puberty and menopause.
• Aging – Veins and valves naturally become weak as you age.
Sclerotherapy is a proven remedy for leg vein problems. It provides faster recovery, less discomfort than surgery and long-term results. It is a quick procedure that may help you get rid of problematic veins in your legs and avoid more serious problems in the future.
When you talk to our specialist at The Dermatology, Laser and Vein Center, you can ask if sclerotherapy is the right treatment for your problematic leg veins. Our office is located in Cincinnati. Contact us today to schedule your consultation to learn more.