Millions of women are bothered by spider veins – those small yet unsightly clusters of red, blue or purple veins that most commonly appear on the thighs, calves and ankles. In fact, it’s estimated that at least half of the adult female population is plagued with this common cosmetic problem. Women of any age may be good candidates for Sclerotherapy, but most fall between the ages of 30 and 60.
Spider veins are treated with Sclerotherapy. In this rather simple procedure, veins are injected with a sclerosing solution, which causes them to collapse and fade from view. The procedure may also remedy the bothersome symptoms associated with spider veins, including aching, burning, swelling and night cramps.
The treatment lasts 15 to 45 minutes that requires no anesthesia, so it will be performed in an outpatient setting, most likely in your doctor’s office. Although you probably won’t want to wear any leg-baring fashions for about two weeks, your activity will not be significantly limited in any other way from Sclerotherapy treatment.
Side Effects & Risks
Serious medical complications from Sclerotherapy are extremely rare when the procedure is performed by a qualified practitioner. However, they may occur. Risks include the formation of blood clots in the veins; severe inflammation; adverse allergic reactions to the sclerosing solution; and skin injury that could leave a small but permanent scar.
A common cosmetic complication is pigmentation irregularity – brownish splotches on the affected skin that may take months to fade, sometimes up to a year. Another problem that can occur is “telangiectatic matting,” in which fine reddish blood vessels appear around the treated area, requiring further injections.
You can reduce the risks associated with treatment by choosing a doctor who has adequate training in Sclerotherapy and is well versed in the different types of sclerosing agents available. A qualified doctor can help you select which type of sclerosing medication is most appropriate for your needs.
Vascular Lesions are superficial blue, red, or purple veins under the skin’s surface. Some common types include Rosacea (facial inflammation) and Spider Veins (tiny vessels that appear near the surface of the face).
Pulse Light Treatment
After your initial preparation, your treatment provider will move the Palomar MediLux handpiece over your skin. The handpiece emits a light that breaks up the pigment in the lesions. Most people perceive the light as a gentle “snapping” sensation, which causes little to no discomfort.
Side Effects & Risks
Many people experience some mild temporary redness and swelling, similar to a sunburn, in the treated area shortly after treatment. This does not interfere with normal activities and usually subsides within a day. In some cases, the redness may last longer, but will still be mild and temporary. Pigmented lesions will darken slightly after treatment, and then fade away after about 10-14 days. Vessels (visible veins) generally undergo immediate graying or blanching and the surrounding area may redden. The vessels then fade after about 10-14 days.