Venus Vein Center
1101 Laurel Oak Rd
Voorhees, NJ 08043
856-354-VEIN (8346)
 
 

Sclerotherapy

Sclerotherapy is a procedure used to treat varicose veins and spider veins. It involves an injection of a solution directly into the varicose vein using a very fine needle. The solution irritates the lining of the vessel, causing it to swell and stick together. Over time, the vessel turns into scar tissue that fades from view. Many different solutions are available for use in sclerotherapy, and the doctor will select which is best for your particular needs.

The number of varicose veins injected in one session is variable, depending on the size and location of the veins, and the patient's overall medical condition. Mild discomfort may occur, and a cramping sensation may be felt for 1 to 2 minutes when larger varicose veins are injected. The sclerotherapy procedure itself takes about 30 to 45 minutes. Sclerotherapy works well for most patients with varicose veins. It is estimated that as many as 50 percent to 80 percent of injected varicose veins may be eliminated with each injection session. A few (less than 10 percent) of the people who have sclerotherapy on their varicose veins do not respond to the injections at all. In these instances, different solutions or a different method, such as laser therapy, may be tried. Spider veins respond to sclerotherapy in 3 to 6 weeks, and larger veins respond in 3 to 4 months. If the veins respond to the treatment, they will not reappear. However, new veins may appear over time and additional sclerotherapy sessions may be needed.

Before your appointment, shower and wash your legs thoroughly. Avoid shaving and moisturizers the day of and the day after the procedure. Your legs should NOT be tan at the time of your treatment. Avoid sun exposure on the legs and do not use self tanner prior to your procedure. You will be given a pair of disposable exam shorts to wear for the procedure. Please wear loose fitting pants or shorts to your procedure, as you leg will be bandaged after the procedure. Wear a cool, comfortable top as the room will be heated during your treatment

Certain side effects may be experienced after sclerotherapy. Larger injected varicose veins may become lumpy and hard for several months before resolving. Raised red areas may appear at the injection sites and should disappear within a few days. Brown lines or spots on the skin may be noted at the site of the injection, possibly caused by a form of iron that escapes from the injected veins. In most cases, they disappear within 3 to 6 months, but can be permanent about 5 percent of the time. Bruising may occur around the injection site and can last several days or weeks.

Other side effects rarely develop after sclerotherapy. If you have any of these side effects, please contact your physician immediately:

  • Inflammation within five inches of the groin
  • Sudden onset of a swollen leg
  • Formation of small ulcers at the injection site
  • Red streaking, especially in the groin area
  • Allergic reactions to the sclerosing agent (may occur at the time of the injection and are rarely serious).

Call Venus Vein Center with any concerns or questions you may have before or after the sclerotherapy procedure. You will also want to discuss any medications you are taking with the doctor to ensure there are no interactions. Please let us know if you have any allergies or sensitivities to adhesives or latex, a history of asthma, or if you may be pregnant.

After the treatment you will be able to drive yourself home. You may resume your regular activities and are encouraged to walk. You will be instructed to wear support hosiery or compression wraps to "compress" the treated vessels for a few days after your treatment. Support stockings purchased from a department store may not be adequate if a heavier compression stocking is prescribed.

After the procedure, avoid alcohol, aspirin, ibuprofen and other anti-inflammatory medications for at least 48 hours. Tylenol may be taken and ice may be used for swelling. Avoid hot water (use warm water to shower) tub baths for 24 hours. Your legs may feel tender and sore. You will be encouraged to walk. Treated veins may appear discolored and firm to the touch and will fade over time.

If additional treatments are necessary, they may be performed at 4-6 week intervals.

See FAQs for Sclerotherapy

Would you like to learn more about vascular disease? See our main practice website at www.accnj.com.