WHAT IS SCLEROTHERAPY?
Sclerotherapy is a widely employed and reliable method of treating varicose veins of the lower limbs, and involves the injection of a chemical substance or solution (termed the sclerosant) into a vein. The concept of sclerotherapy can appear to be frightening or worrisome to patients – and understandably so! However, this is an extremely safe and effective procedure when performed by the right care provider. The aim of sclerotherapy is indeed in damaging the lining of the vein to a controlled degree so that the vessel is occluded and disappears from the superficial view.
WHAT CHEMICALS ARE INJECTED INTO THE VEINS?
Not to worry! The chemicals (sclerosants) we use in our clinic are validated and approved for safe use in sclerotherapy. We commonly utilize medical-grade detergent agents or chemical irritants such as hypertonic saline and sodium tetradecyl sulfate which has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
WHAT IS SCLEROTHERAPY INDICATED FOR?
You may have read on the Internet that sclerotherapy is an excellent treatment modality for varicose veins. At FSA Vein, we provide an individualized and tailored approach for all our patients. Every patient is different, and we will discuss various management strategies for your venous problems and enlighten you on the risks and benefits associated with each treatment modality. Essentially, sclerotherapy is a viable therapeutic strategy from the tiniest spider vein to the largest refluxing great veins of the lower limbs. However, larger veins require more sclerosant, which may be associated with a slightly higher risk of complications. This is why we engage the patient at our clinic and engage in shared decision making with you in order to understand your expectations and manage your goals.
WHAT CAN I EXPECT DURING A SCLEROTHERAPY PROCEDURE?
As with any interventional procedure, we will first explain in detail the steps of sclerotherapy and walk you through the entire patient journey. At FSA Vein, we do not treat your problems in isolation – every procedure is preceded by a thorough evaluation of your medical history. Sclerotherapy itself is facilitated by an injection of the appropriate sclerosant via a needle and syringe. We will position you to ensure maximal comfort and ensure that you are topically anesthetized (usually with a numbing agent such as lignocaine) prior to entering the target vein. In small veins, you can usually see the disappearance of the varicosities almost immediately! However, for larger veins, this effect may take longer. Sometimes, if the target vein is fairly large or deeper, we may even adopt the use of ultrasound guidance to precisely localize the vein.
WHAT CAN I EXPECT AFTER A SCLEROTHERAPY PROCEDURE?
After injection sclerotherapy, we recommend prolonged compression of the veins to encourage a smooth healing process. The compression keeps the walls of the target veins apposed to one another to prevent the likelihood of recurrence. We typically use a stretch bandage and encourage our patients to keep it on for at least 24 hours, and during the active hours (morning to evening) in the subsequent 1 to 2 weeks.
CONTACT US TODAY
Are you looking for vein treatment or a vein doctor near you? FSA Vein is at the forefront of varicose vein and spider vein treatments in Pomona and Rancho Cucamonga, CA. Click here to schedule your free vein consult.