Spider veins, telangiectasias, and varicose veins are some of the most common conditions patients consult with Dr. Michele Green daily in her private NYC dermatology office. Luckily, these unwanted leg veins can be quickly treated without side effects and minimal recovery time thanks to sclerotherapy for spider veins and the V-Beam laser for telangiectasias. Varicose veins are more common in women than men, and it is believed to be genetically and hormonally mediated in women. Varicose veins are due to the weakening or damaged valves in the veins themselves. When blood collects in the veins, it expands the size of the veins, making them appear varicose. Both spider veins and varicose veins are generally not linked with severe health conditions, but they can be uncomfortable and unattractive. For these reasons, many patients seek treatment, as they are self-conscious about these spider veins and shy away from wearing shorts or dresses on a hot summer day.
Thanks to sclerotherapy and laser treatments of spider and varicose veins, there is no need to cover up your leg veins during the hot summer months. Approximately twenty percent of adults suffer from varicose veins. With so many patients having spider and varicose veins, it is no wonder that more than 300,000 sclerotherapy treatments are performed annually in the United States. Sclerotherapy remains the gold standard for treating spider veins and varicose veins. Sclerotherapy involves injecting a sclerosing agent directly into the spider and varicose veins, causing them to collapse and fade away. Combining sclerotherapy and V-Beam laser treatment is the best approach to removing these unsightly blood vessels without discomfort or downtime. Dr. Michele Green is an expert in sclerotherapy and non-invasive cosmetic dermatology. She has treated and removed these unwanted spider veins for over 25 years in her boutique, private Upper East Side dermatology office. Dr. Green has treated thousands of patients for unwanted veins in her NYC office. She will review the best treatment options to remove your unsightly leg veins and give you beautiful clear legs.
Dr. Michele Green is an internationally renowned board-certified dermatologist with over two and a half decades of experience providing some of the world’s most discerning individuals with the best cosmetic treatment options, including sclerotherapy and V-Beam laser treatment for leg veins. She is consistently identified as one of New York’s best dermatologists by Super Doctors, Castle Connolly, and New York Magazine for her dedication to her patients and expertise. When you consult with Dr. Green at her private dermatology office in Manhattan’s Upper East Side neighborhood, she will work with you to create a customized treatment plan for rejuvenation that best suits your specific concerns and provides optimal results.
What are varicose veins and spider veins?
Varicose veins are characterized by swollen, twisted veins visible on the skin’s surface. Typically a deep blue or purple, these affected veins most commonly appear on the lower extremities, such as the legs. Varicose veins are usually just a cosmetic concern – the discoloration and bulging nature of the veins often appear unsightly – but can also cause pain or discomfort. The symptoms of varicose veins include throbbing, heaviness, leg aches, cramping muscles, or swelling. These painful symptoms can be exacerbated if you are in one position for too long, such as standing or sitting for extended periods. Heaviness, aching, and swelling in the legs can also occur after walking a great deal.
Spider veins, also known as telangiectasia, are similar to varicose veins but are more minor and less severe in their symptoms. They are dilated or broken blood vessels present on the skin. Typically, spider veins appear blue or red and are closer to the skin’s surface. Spider veins are commonly found on the legs but may also develop on the face. Both spider and varicose veins are prevalent, affecting nearly 20% of all adults, and both conditions become more prevalent with age. Again, both spider and varicose veins are present in both men and women but are more common in women.
What causes varicose veins?
Blood circulates throughout your body within two channels: arteries, which transport blood from your heart to the rest of your body, and veins, which circulate blood from your extremities back to your heart. When it comes to transporting blood to and from the legs, gravity aids in blood circulation through your arteries. However, to pump blood back to your heart from your legs, your circulatory system has to work against gravity. For that reason, valves in your veins open as vascular muscles contract to pump blood upwards and then close again to keep the blood from flowing backward. If the valves in your veins become weakened or damaged, it can affect the forward flow of blood. Blood can begin to flow backward and pool in the vein, causing the elastic walls of the vein to swell and twist and leading to the appearance of varicose veins.
What are the risk factors for developing spider veins or varicose veins?
There are many risk factors for developing spider and varicose veins, which are caused when the valves in the veins that keep blood from flowing backward are damaged. This leads to blood pooling in the veins and causes them to twist and swell, creating unsightly, dark-colored bulges near the skin’s surface. Damage can occur to the valves in the vein from various biological factors and lifestyle habits, including the natural aging process, hormone fluctuations, genetic predisposition, obesity, or the frequency with which you stay in one position.
Age – The risk of developing varicose or spider veins increases. Over time, the valves in the veins can become damaged by the regular wear and tear of spending a lot of time on your feet or sitting for too long in one position frequently, for example.
Hormone Fluctuations – Women are more likely to develop varicose or spider veins than men due mainly to hormonal changes that occur more naturally in female patients. The hormones found more prevalently in female patients can hurt the wall of the veins, causing them to become more relaxed. This, in turn, can lead to a reversal of the blood flow and pooling of blood in the veins. The risk of hormone fluctuations leading to varicose veins increases for women on hormonal birth control or who become pregnant. Pregnancy also causes an increase in blood in the body to support the growth of the fetus; however, this can also cause the veins in your body to bulge.
Genetic Predisposition – Researchers have found a greater risk for patients with family members with varicose veins to develop the condition themselves. Family history can, therefore, be a risk factor in developing varicose or spider veins.
Obesity – Studies have also shown that patients who are overweight or obese are more at risk for developing varicose veins or spider veins. Being overweight means that there is more pressure on the veins in the legs, which can lead to damage to the valves in the veins.
Sitting or Standing for a Long Time – Staying in one position, such as sitting in one place or standing in one place for long periods, is also a risk factor for developing varicose veins. Frequently standing for extended amounts of time can put a lot of pressure on the veins in the legs. Over time, this can wear away at the valves, which keep the blood flowing forward. Furthermore, blood does not circulate well if you stay in one position. Therefore, sitting in one place for prolonged amounts of time can also be a risk factor for developing varicose or spider veins.
Can varicose veins be prevented?
While varicose veins cannot be prevented entirely, there are changes to your lifestyle that you can make to reduce the risk of developing varicose veins. To do so, it is essential to improve the circulation in your body by exercising frequently, consuming a high-fiber diet, wearing shoes without a high heel, and ensuring that you are adjusting your position so you are not sitting or standing in one place for too long. Maintaining a healthy weight and losing weight if you are overweight is best.
While the condition cannot be prevented entirely, very safe and effective treatment options are available at expert dermatologist Dr. Green’s office in New York City. Dr. Green combines sclerotherapy and laser therapy to eliminate varicose veins’ unsightly appearance and discomfort.
What is sclerotherapy used for?
Sclerotherapy involves injecting a sclerosing solution, such as Asclera®, directly into targeted veins to treat spider veins. Spider veins are superficial leg veins commonly appearing on the skin’s surface. This is due to the increased pressure in the veins in the legs while standing and walking, although other risk factors. Spider veins can also be attributed to genetics, obesity, trauma, and hormonal changes. The appearance of varicose and spider veins can negatively affect one’s self-esteem and quality of life, as many try to hide the appearance of these veins with pants or long dresses. When the sclerosing agent is injected, the injected veins scar, rerouting blood circulation to other healthy veins. The collapsed vein is naturally processed by the body and fades away, eliminating the appearance of bulging, twisted veins. Sclerotherapy is a unique, non-invasive treatment that can stop the formation of varicose and spider veins and return your legs to look younger, more even, and more precise.
What is sclerotherapy for varicose veins?
When it comes to eliminating the appearance of bulging, twisted varicose veins, sclerotherapy is the gold standard treatment. Varicose veins are a common condition affecting approximately 20% of adults, and in the United States, more than 300,000 sclerotherapy treatments are performed yearly. Sclerotherapy treatment is an effective procedure that requires no downtime or recovery time. The process involves the injection of a liquid, called a sclerosis agent, into the varicose or spider veins. The fluid causes the veins to collapse and disappear, eliminating the condition’s cosmetic and physical symptoms. FDA-approved sclerosants in the United States include sodium tetradecyl sulfate (a detergent) and polidocanol (Asclera). In the past, hypertonic saline was used as a sclerosant, but it had the disadvantage of causing increased matting or neo-vascularization, pain, and skin discoloration. In Dr. Green’s New York City office, she uses the FDA-approved sclerosant called Asclera, which is injected into the affected veins using a small needle. The treatment causes minimal discomfort, mainly when performed by an expert, board-certified dermatologist like Dr. Green.
How does sclerotherapy work?
Sclerotherapy is a safe and effective treatment involving injecting a sclerosant or liquid medicine into damaged leg veins. This liquid forces the veins to scar and shrink and, as a result, to be reabsorbed into the body as local tissue. When this occurs, it causes the blood to be rerouted through other veins to return to the heart. As the damaged veins are reabsorbed into the body and the blood is delivered, the appearance of twisted veins on the skin’s surface disappears. Further, the procedure can relieve much of the physical feelings of discomfort that varicose veins can produce. The treatment alleviates the swelling, aching, and burning associated with varicose veins.
Spider veins are smaller than varicose veins, and the affected veins can be treated with a sclerosing agent, which destroys these small veins painlessly with minimal recovery time. Some physicians utilize foam sclerotherapy to treat more prominent varicose veins. When you have your initial consultation appointment with Dr. Green, she can examine the treatment area to determine which sclerotherapy method suits your needs.
Who is a candidate for sclerotherapy?
A good candidate for sclerotherapy is someone in good health who wants to eliminate varicose or spider veins for cosmetic or medical reasons. If you are concerned that you might have underlying venous disease, it is best to consult with a vascular surgeon or other qualified healthcare professional. It is essential to determine if there is underlying arterial or venous insufficiency. Venous insufficiency predisposes one to increased blood clots, leg swelling, and skin ulcerations. Many patients who suffer from aching, swollen, burning, or night cramps benefit from sclerotherapy.
Pregnant and breastfeeding patients are not candidates for sclerotherapy. You may not be a good candidate if you take oral contraceptives. A history of blood clots would also be a contraindication for sclerotherapy treatment. If you are actively smoking, you are not a good candidate since this can also cause an increased risk of blood clots.
How to prepare for your sclerotherapy treatment
It is best to avoid blood thinners, such as aspirin, Aleve, Motrin (ibuprofen), and other anti-inflammatory medications, vitamins, and herbal supplements, for at least one week before your sclerotherapy treatment. Some patients require pre-treatment with an oral antibiotic, which should be discussed during your consultation with Dr. Green. It is best not to apply any lotions or creams to the treatment area immediately before your sclerotherapy injections. Avoid waxing or shaving the treated areas within 24 hours before your procedure.
Spider vein and varicose vein treatment with sclerotherapy
If you are a good candidate for sclerotherapy, a topical numbing cream should be applied one hour before the procedure to minimize any localized discomfort from the injection of the treated veins. The treatment areas are cleaned, and multiple injections with a fine needle are performed directly into the veins. The sclerosant is injected into the spider or varicose veins, causing them to scar and collapse internally. The treatment can take 30 minutes or more, depending on the extent of the veins needing treatment.
After your sclerotherapy, the treated areas may be wrapped with a long-stretch bandage to add extra pressure. Compression stockings are recommended after treatment for both spider and reticular veins. You can return to most normal activities directly after your sclerotherapy treatment. Dr. Green will schedule a follow-up visit approximately one month after your procedure to check your progress and your next treatment session.
What to do after sclerotherapy
Following sclerotherapy treatment, you can resume most normal daily activities, including working and light exercising. Physical activity is beneficial after sclerotherapy as it prevents blood clots from forming in the treated area. The most crucial post-sclerotherapy treatment instruction is to wear mild compression stockings for at least seven days. Dr. Green recommends wearing the compression stockings as much as possible between the scheduled sclerotherapy treatments. Compression stockings aid in recovery after sclerotherapy, improving blood circulation and preventing pain and swelling in the legs and ankles. The compression also helps reduce bruising and blood clotting.
What not to do after sclerotherapy
Avoid the activities listed here for 48 hours after the sclerotherapy treatment:
- Airplane travel
- Hot baths
- Direct exposure to sunlight or sunbathing on the treated areas
- Heavy exercise
How long to wear compression stockings after sclerotherapy
Compression stockings should be worn for at least fourteen days after the sclerotherapy treatment. Dr. Green recommends wearing the compression stockings as much as possible between the scheduled sclerotherapy treatments. They can be worn during the daytime while you are active and taken off during the nighttime while you sleep. Wearing compression stockings after sclerotherapy treatment reduces the risk of developing side effects, which is essential to post-sclerotherapy care.
What happens if you don’t wear compression stockings after sclerotherapy?
Compression stockings are an essential part of the recovery process following sclerotherapy. After the treatment, Dr. Green typically prescribes compression stockings for the two weeks following the procedure. Compression stockings are beneficial in several ways: by keeping compression on your lower extremities, the stockings help to minimize bruising and swelling, improve circulation, and reduce the risk of developing blood clots. As such, the risk of developing mild and severe side effects decreases if you wear your compression stockings for two weeks following the sclerotherapy treatment.
What to avoid after sclerotherapy
After a sclerotherapy treatment, you will be instructed to wear compression stockings for one week. These stockings help to “compress” the treated vessels and make the treatment results more effective. It is essential to avoid the following for the next 48 hours.
- Airplane travel
- Hot baths
- Direct exposure to sunlight or sunbathing in the treated areas
- Avoid heavy exercise
How long after sclerotherapy do veins disappear?
Typically, the treated veins take at least four to six weeks after injections to resolve. Larger, treated veins may take longer to disappear after sclerotherapy, such as up to six months. After your sclerotherapy treatment, Dr. Green will schedule a follow-up appointment to check your progress and determine whether an additional treatment session is needed to achieve the best results.
What are the side effects of sclerotherapy?
Mild localized side effects and potentially severe allergic reactions are associated with sclerotherapy.
Localized side effects include:
- Red areas or raised bumps at the injection site that should disappear within a few days
- Allergic reaction in the treatment area
- Bruising near the injected vein can last for days or weeks
- More prominent veins can develop hard lumps, which may take months to dissipate
- Discoloration or hyperpigmentation can develop as a result of the injections
- Neo-vascularization can occur with the development of new minute blood vessels, which are called telangiectatic matting
More severe side effects, which require immediate medical intervention, include:
- Development of small ulcers at the injection site
- A sudden swollen leg
- Signs of inflammation or infection
- Deep vein thrombosis (DVT) and pulmonary embolism
- Risk of blood clots
- Necrosis due to inadvertent injection of a sclerosant into an artery.
Visit FDA.gov for more information.
What is the process of Sclerotherapy Treatment for Spider Veins?
The good news is that spider and varicose veins can be treated effectively. If you have painful and unsightly spider or varicose veins, sclerotherapy may be your solution. Dr. Green uses the FDA -approved sclerosant Asclera® (polidocanol), which irritates the lining of the blood vessel, causing it to seal up and become invisible. After the vein collapses, the body slowly absorbs the remaining tissue until the skin becomes smooth and blemish-free. Sclerotherapy has even been used to treat patients with venous malformations.
Patients can expect a sclerotherapy session to last between fifteen and forty-five minutes, depending on the number of veins needing injection. Asclera® is injected directly into each vein with a fine needle, and multiple injections are carried out in a single treatment session. It should be noted that most patients will require more than one treatment session, and these are typically spaced one month apart to allow the sclerotherapy treatment to heal and the spider veins to disappear. The average number of sclerotherapy sessions is four treatments, although that number can vary based on the number of spider veins present.
VBeam laser treatment for spider veins
VBeam laser treatment is the gold standard for treating small red veins or capillaries on the skin, including the face, chest, back, arms, and legs. The VBeam is a pulsed dye, non-ablative laser, which is designed to remove vascular lesions, rosacea, redness, and pigmentation. Dr. Green uses the new VBeam Perfecta, the gold-standard laser therapy for redness. The laser delivers intense energy to treat the targeted blood vessels but is gentle enough to preserve the surrounding tissue and ensure patient comfort. The laser pulse is very effective in helping to eliminate the affected veins. VBeam laser treatment can be used to treat spider veins and combined with sclerotherapy treatment to maximize the treatment results.
Which is better for spider veins: sclerotherapy or laser treatment?
When patients ask which is better, sclerotherapy or laser treatments, the answer is: it depends. Each treatment is very safe and effective for treating spider veins and can be used individually or combined for an even more thorough treatment process. Neither treatment requires any downtime following the procedure, and the risk of side effects for both is minimal. The two treatments have slightly different functions when addressing the cosmetic concerns of spider veins. If a vein is large enough to have a needle injected, sclerotherapy is the treatment for spider veins. However, small or matted veins respond much better to laser therapy with the VBeam laser. When addressing varicose veins, which are typically more extensive and more swollen than spider veins, sclerotherapy is the treatment of choice. As such, neither treatment is inherently “better” than the other; instead, the circumstances and specific needs of the patient dictate which treatment is best. When you have your initial consultation with Dr. Green, the two of you will discuss your physical and aesthetic goals, and she will examine the affected area to determine the treatment plan that works best for you.
How much does sclerotherapy cost?
When patients ask how much sclerotherapy is for spider or varicose veins, the answer is: it depends. The cost of the procedure depends on a wide variety of factors, including your geographic location, the size and scope of the treatment area, the specific combination of treatments, and the type of institution at which you are receiving treatment. The content and severity of varicose veins determine how many injections are necessary to treat the condition. Spider veins, for example, are a less severe variation of varicose veins and may require fewer injections than a more severe case. In addition, a board-certified dermatologist who is highly experienced in treating leg veins may be more expensive than a general practitioner. The combination of treatments you are receiving will also affect the overall cost of the procedure – if you are receiving laser treatments in addition to sclerotherapy, for example. When you come in for your initial consultation, Dr. Green’s office will be able to give you a more precise estimate of the cost of the treatment based on your unique treatment plan.
Does insurance cover sclerotherapy?
No. Sclerotherapy is a cosmetic procedure, so most insurance does not consider it a medically necessary approach. It is always best to consult your insurance company to verify your benefits and eligibility. Before you begin the sclerotherapy treatment, Dr. Green recommends calling your insurance company to know whether the procedure will be covered.
Does sclerotherapy hurt?
Sclerotherapy involves the injection of liquid sclerosant, Asclera, into the affected veins with a fine needle. No downtime is necessary following the treatment, and you can return directly to your regularly scheduled activities. Regarding discomfort during the procedure, sclerotherapy with Asclera is slightly uncomfortable but not painful. You may feel mild pain during injections of smaller veins, and cramping may occur for one to two minutes after the infusion in more prominent veins. In the past, dermatologists used hypertonic saline, which was much more uncomfortable. To minimize discomfort, Dr. Green will prescribe a topical numbing cream that you can apply to your legs one hour before the treatment session.
Is sclerotherapy safe?
Sclerotherapy has been a safe and effective treatment in medical practice for nearly one hundred years. The procedure is minimally invasive and requires no recovery time, meaning you can return to your regularly scheduled activities immediately after the procedure. The risk of developing significant side effects is low, and common side effects are minor, such as bruising at the injection site, red bumps around the treatment area, and itching. You may not be a good candidate for sclerotherapy treatment if you are pregnant or have a history of allergic reactions. Patients who have previously experienced allergic reactions to other therapies may also be at a higher risk of allergic reactions for sclerotherapy.
How long does sclerotherapy last?
The amount of time within which results of sclerotherapy begin to show themselves vary depending on the size and scope of the treatment area. If you only receive treatment for spider veins, which are smaller and less expansive than varicose veins, you may see results from the procedure within three to six weeks. More prominent varicose veins may take three to four months for results to become apparent and multiple treatments. The results of sclerotherapy can last for several years. However, if you are prone to having spider veins, new ones can appear sooner, and there is no guaranteed way to prevent their formation.
Is sclerotherapy permanent?
Sclerotherapy will treat unwanted varicose and spider veins and remove them. However, new leg veins requiring treatment can appear due to age, genetics, or hormones. If new varicose or spider veins are formed on your legs, you can receive sclerotherapy treatment again. Following sclerotherapy treatment, this risk of developing new spider veins can be reduced if you exercise regularly, eat a well-balanced diet, elevate your legs regularly, and ensure that you change your position frequently.
How many sclerotherapy treatments will I need?
The number of sclerotherapy sessions depends on the number of veins and the extent of the treatment area of your spider veins, and your general medical conditions. While the number of treatments will vary from person to person, four sessions are typically needed to eliminate the appearance of 0varicose veins. Treatment sessions should be scheduled approximately one month apart, and it is best to have your leg veins injected during winter since the main side effect is temporary bruising. By having sclerotherapy of varicose veins performed over the winter, the bruising from the injections will not interfere with your plans, and your legs will be evident by summer.
What is foam sclerotherapy?
Foam sclerotherapy is ultrasound-guided with foam, a treatment option for varicose veins. It is often performed in conjunction with an endovenous ablation procedure. When the foam sclerosant is injected into the targeted vein using a fine needle, it can stay inside the lining of the blood vessel longer than a liquid sclerosant. This is effective in treating minor to medium-sized varicose veins. The treated veins close permanently, and the damaged vein is absorbed, processed, and excreted from the body. The blood is then redirected to the surrounding healthy veins to maintain proper circulation. The ultrasound is performed before the foam sclerotherapy treatment to locate the target vein, and it is also performed after the treatment to ensure the injected vein has fully sealed shut. Patients are instructed to wear compression stockings after the procedure to encourage healthy circulation. Foam sclerotherapy and endovenous ablation are typically performed at an outpatient vascular clinic. For more information, visit radiologyinfo.org.
Can I inject spider veins at home?
No! Do not attempt to inject spider veins at home. First, the sclerosing agent that is FDA-approved to treat spider veins is only available for purchase by physicians, and an experienced physician like Dr. Green must perform sclerotherapy. You cannot remove spider veins with over-the-counter or prescribed creams, gels, or pills. Attempting to inject spider veins at home will significantly increase the risk of developing severe side effects.
Regularly wearing compression stockings can help prevent more spider veins from forming by promoting healthy blood flow throughout the legs. Exercise and weight management can also control the formation of new spider veins. Being active and using the muscles helps the legs push blood through the veins and avoid pooling. Maintaining a healthy weight relieves your legs from the extra downward pressure, making it more difficult for blood to travel upward in your veins.
What other treatment options are available for varicose veins?
In some cases, Dr. Green may determine that sclerotherapy is not the right option for your particular case of varicose veins. If valid, several other options exist when choosing which treatment process will work best for you. If you have a relatively mild chance, compression stockings alone can help to improve blood circulation and reduce the amount of blood pooling in the veins. Compression stockings can be an excellent place to start treating varicose veins; they cannot reverse existing ones, but they will help prevent new ones from forming and existing ones from worsening. Laser treatment is another option for varicose veins and can vary from endogenous laser ablation to radiofrequency ablation. Laser treatment can also be combined with sclerotherapy to enhance the treatment results. Patients can turn to surgery, including conventional vascular surgery, in severe cases, such as leg ulcers or severe pain.
Is sclerotherapy painful?
Sclerotherapy treatment is a well-tolerated cosmetic procedure, although some patients may feel a stinging or cramping sensation during the injections. For patients with sensitive skin, Dr. Green may prescribe a topical numbing cream containing lidocaine that should be applied to the entire treatment area one hour before the appointment. Covering the applied numbing cream with saran wrap is recommended to protect clothing. Once you arrive at Dr. Green’s private dermatology office in Manhattan’s Upper East Side neighborhood, the numbing cream will be removed and the skin sterilized for the procedure. Some patients may have residual tenderness, swelling, or bruising near the injection sites following the process, which typically resolves within several days.
Who performs sclerotherapy?
Dr. Green performs sclerotherapy injections at her private dermatology office in Manhattan’s Upper East Side. Sclerotherapy should only be performed by an experienced healthcare professional in a medical setting, such as a board-certified dermatologist or plastic surgeon. Sclerotherapy treatment, while safe and effective for reducing varicose and spider veins, involve injecting a chemical sclerosing agent into the leg veins. Working with an experienced healthcare professional is essential to prevent unwanted complications or side effects and guarantee the best results. Dr. Green is an internationally renowned board-certified dermatologist with over two and a half decades of experience at the forefront of cosmetic dermatology. When you consult with Dr. Green, she will work with you to create a customized rejuvenation plan that best suits your needs and goals with long-lasting, natural-looking results.
What are the dangers of sclerotherapy?
Sclerotherapy entails the injection of certain chemicals called sclerosing agents into the leg veins. While the procedure is considered a safe and effective treatment option for varicose and spider veins, side effects can include bruising and swelling in the treatment area. These side effects typically resolve on their own shortly after treatment. Patients may also develop severe and rare side effects, including deep vein thrombosis, ulceration, and necrosis. To best prevent these side effects, it is always recommended to have sclerotherapy treatment with an experienced board-certified dermatologist, such as Dr. Michele Green in NYC.
Is foam sclerotherapy dangerous?
Foam sclerotherapy is different than conventional injection sclerotherapy. Sclerotherapy uses a sclerosing agent in its liquid form, whereas with foam sclerotherapy, the sclerosing agent is mixed with air to create a consistency that is like shaving cream. Foam sclerotherapy can be dangerous if inadvertently injected into an artery, so it is critical to have treatment with an experienced healthcare professional like Dr. Green. Foam sclerotherapy is better suited to treating larger veins, and the most common side effects include swelling, bruising, and tenderness at or near the injection sites, which tend to resolve within several days. Like sclerotherapy, patients are encouraged to wear compression stockings and spend some time walking each day after the foam sclerotherapy procedure. The compression stockings will help reduce swelling, and engaging in regular movement like walking helps prevent blood clots from occurring. When you have sclerotherapy treatment with Dr. Green, you will receive all the pertinent aftercare information required to ensure you achieve and maintain the best results.
Can you fly after sclerotherapy?
Flying after sclerotherapy treatment for at least several weeks is not recommended. Patients treated with sclerotherapy can fly a short distance (four hours or less) two weeks after their injections. Long-distance travel should be avoided until at least four weeks after treatment. Patients that engage in other spider and varicose vein treatments, such as endovenous catheter ablation that uses radiofrequency or laser energy, should refrain from flying until at least three weeks after their treatment. The risk of developing a deep vein thrombosis or blood clot following sclerotherapy treatment (or other varicose/ spider vein treatment) increases when traveling on flights. The trouble is even more significant for patients taking an oral contraceptive pill, smoking tobacco, using hormone therapy, or generally in poor health. If you want to treat leg veins and travel, please advise Dr. Green. Dr. Green will work with you to develop a timeline for reducing your leg veins that provide optimal results while keeping you safe and healthy and limiting the risk of developing unwanted side effects.
Can you exercise after sclerotherapy?
Walking each day after sclerotherapy treatment is essential to reduce the risk of developing a blood clot and promote the best results. However, patients should refrain from strenuous exercise for at least 24 hours following sclerotherapy. It is also important to remember to wear compression stockings for about two weeks following sclerotherapy treatment. Compression stockings should be worn throughout the day and can be removed for sleeping. When you have your sclerotherapy treatment with Dr. Green at her private dermatology office in Manhattan’s Upper East Side neighborhood, she will provide all the pertinent aftercare information required to ensure you get the best results.
Can sclerotherapy cause blood clots?
Sclerotherapy breaks down the damaged leg veins that can no longer support the body. Sclerotherapy treatment involves injecting chemicals called sclerosing agents into the leg veins, which causes the blood vessels to collapse. One rare side effect of sclerotherapy is blood clots, as blood can become trapped in the collapsed leg vein. If you have had a blood clot in the past, you may be able to have sclerotherapy treatment depending on what caused the clot and the severity. Your healthcare provider will evaluate your risk to determine whether you are a candidate for sclerotherapy treatment. Blood clots, while a rare complication, are serious side effects that require immediate attention from a healthcare professional. Compression stockings should be worn for two weeks following sclerotherapy treatment to minimize the risk of blood clots and to aid with swelling. Patients should also engage in regular movements, such as walking each day, following sclerotherapy to reduce the risk of blood clots.
Is Varithena a type of sclerotherapy?
Varithena is a microfoam treatment option for varicose leg veins caused by issues with the great saphenous vein. A small amount of the microfoam is injected into the diseased vein, causing it to collapse. The most common side effects include bruising and tenderness at the injection sites. Compression stockings should be worn two weeks after the treatment, and patients should refrain from strenuous exercise for one week. Most patients require a single treatment session to obtain their ideal results, which typically lasts about an hour. Varithena is a prescription medication that should only be administered by a board-certified dermatologist. Varithena differs from injection sclerotherapy, which utilizes a liquid sclerosing agent to treat small varicose veins. When you consult with Dr. Green at her private dermatology office in the Upper East Side neighborhood of Manhattan, she will physically assess your leg veins to determine which treatment option best suits your needs and goals.
Is sclerotherapy worth it?
Yes! Most patients with unsightly varicose and spider veins agree that sclerotherapy is worth it. Some clinical studies have shown that sclerotherapy can permanently eliminate 90% or more of the treated blood vessels. When sclerotherapy injections are performed by an expert, such as board-certified dermatologist Dr. Michele Green in NYC, the procedure is quick and well tolerated, with few potential side effects. Most patients require several treatment sessions to achieve the final desired results, and although compression stockings must be worn for several weeks following each treatment session, the downtime is minimal. For many reasons, sclerotherapy is a popular cosmetic treatment for varicose and spider veins in the legs. It can help restore self-esteem and boost confidence in whatever you wear, which is always worth it!
How do I get started treating my spider veins today?
The appearance of spider and varicose veins can be disheartening for patients, especially during the hot summer when NYC shows off your favorite dress or bikini without worrying about your leg veins. Dealing with spider and varicose veins is frustrating, especially if you have tried over-the-counter creams and lotions that claim to help them disappear to no avail. Thankfully, non-invasive cosmetic treatments like sclerotherapy and VBeam Perfecta are available to make those stubborn veins disappear. Whether your spider veins have developed due to age or genetics, or if your job requires you to sit or stand for an extended period, Dr. Green is here to restore your confidence in your legs and help you want to wear your favorite summer dress again.
Dr. Michele Green is an internationally renowned board-certified dermatologist with over two and a half decades of experience providing some of the world’s most discerning individuals with the best cosmetic treatment options, including sclerotherapy for leg veins. She is consistently identified as one of NYC’s best dermatologists by Castle Connolly, New York Magazine, and Super Doctors for her dedication to her patients and expertise. When you consult with Dr. Green at her private office in Manhattan’s Upper East Side neighborhood, she will work with you to develop a personalized treatment plan that best suits your specific concerns. To book a consultation to find out if you are a good candidate for sclerotherapy, please call our NYC office today at 212 535 3088 or contact us online.