Reston Dermatology & Cosmetic Center
1830 Town Center Drive
Reston, VA 20190
Keeping Spiders in Their Webs
We are often asked if there is a way to get rid of spidery looking and varicose veins on the legs, and sometimes on the face. If you have them, you are not alone. Commonly caused by pregnancy, excessive standing, aging, hormonal shifts, weight gain, or by heredity, these can sometimes be painful and embarrassing, particularly during the “show it all” summer months.
One of the most popular treatments for this condition is actually a process that has been used and improved for more than 50 years. First developed in Europe to relieve the discomfort and appearance of varicose veins, sclerotherapy today uses more effective medical products than ever before. Treatments last between 15 and 45 minutes, depending on the number of veins being treated in the session.
During the treatment, a sclerosing agent is injected into the problem veins with an extremely thin needle. The word sclerosing comes from the Greek word for hardening.
This actually irritates the tissue and closes the central vein the area where spider veins and varicose veins are formed. The body then initiates the natural healing process and the vein begins to decompose, shrink and disappear.
While most people are candidates for this procedure, a consultation with a qualified and experienced doctor will determine if your health history, condition of your spider and varicose veins and other factors make this procedure right for you.
In some cases, a combination of treatments, including sclerotherapy, may be suggested. For maximum results, generally an improvement of 60 to 80 percent over time, it often takes multiple treatments another factor that will be established when you see the doctor.
When you actually have the treatment, you may be asked to stand while your problem veins are marked and photographed. Then, the sclerosing agent is administered. Discomfort is minimal, according to patients who have undergone sclerotherapy, and only local anesthesia is required.
Your after-care is also easy. In most cases, regular activities can be resumed almost immediately, although you may be asked to wear support hose or snug pressure wrappings on the treated area to reduce any side effects and speed the healing process.
Generally side effects are minimal sometimes the affected veins may darken and the area may appear bruised. Larger blood vessels may appear pigmented but this is temporary and will fade over time.
There is still plenty of time to explore sclerotherapy in time to make the most of your summer, so call the doctor and make an appointment for a consultation.
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