Rompers, shorts, bathing suits, and short dresses are officially in season! Varicose veins that were easy to hide during the winter months are suddenly unavoidable with summer clothes. At Advanced Liposuction Center, our Grove City plastic surgeons want you to know that you don’t have to hide your legs if you have varicose veins. Sclerotherapy is a safe and effective way to remove unsightly spider and varicose veins.
More Than a Cosmetic Concern
Varicose veins have several potential sources, including:
- A job that requires long periods of sitting or standing
- Hormone replacement therapy
Whatever the cause, varicose veins are not only unpleasant to look at, but may also pose a health risk. Varicose veins have the potential to form blood clots, which makes this a potential medical issue as well as a cosmetic one. You may experience cramping and aching, along with feelings of numbness, tiredness and heaviness in your legs.
A Simple Procedure
Sclerotherapy involves very little discomfort. First, a topical anesthetic is applied to the area. Then, our expert injectors place a tiny needle into the vein and release the sclerosing agent. This causes the vein to shrink, close off and collapse. Within a month, the body absorbs the remnants of the vein and it completely disappears. The procedure is usually completed in under 30 minutes and you’ll be able to drive yourself home and resume normal activities usually in about 3 days. Any temporary bruising, tenderness, itching or discoloration on the skin will all be gone within a few weeks.
Results are visible within one month, however some patients may require more than one treatment. Vein disease is progressive and for that reason we recommend regular, follow-up visits because new varicose veins may develop.
Are there different types of sclerosing agents used in sclerotherapy?
Yes, there are different types of sclerosing agents used in sclerotherapy. These agents are injected into the affected veins to irritate the vein lining, causing it to collapse and eventually be reabsorbed by the body. The choice of sclerosing agent depends on various facors, including the size of the veins being treated and the medical practitioner’s preference. Common sclerosing agents include:
- Polidocanol: This is one of the most commonly used sclerosing agents. It comes in different concentrations, and the choice depends on the size and type of veins being treated.
- Sodium Tetradecyl Sulfate (STS): STS is another sclerosing agent used in the treatment of varicose veins. It’s available in various concentrations.
- Hypertonic Saline (Sodium Chloride): Concentrated saline solutions can be used as sclerosing agents, especially for smaller veins like spider veins.
How long do the results of sclerotherapy typically last?
The duration of results from sclerotherapy can vary depending on several factors, including the size of the treated veins, the number of sessions, individual response to treatment, and lifestyle factors. Here are general considerations:
- Immediate Changes: Some individuals may notice improvements shortly after the first session, especially for smaller veins like spider veins.
- Complete Results: Complete resolution of treated veins may take several weeks to months, and multiple sessions might be required for optimal results.
- Maintenance Sessions: Over time, new veins may develop, or previously treated veins might reappear. In such cases, maintenance sessions could be considered to address these changes.
- Lifestyle Factors: Lifestyle factors, such as standing or sitting for prolonged periods, obesity, and hormonal changes, can influence the longevity of results. Following post-treatment care recommendations is essential.
- Individual Variability: Responses to sclerotherapy can vary among individuals. Some may experience long-lasting results, while others may require periodic touch-ups.
In addition to sclerotherapy, we offer laser and other skin treatments that will help you achieve the look you want. To learn more, schedule your free consultation with our expert plastic surgeons who can direct you as to the best way to achieve your appearance goals. Contact any of our Pittsburgh area offices today by calling: 724-683-7581.