Sclerotherapy Q & A
The Cosmetic Office of Dr. Platt
What is sclerotherapy?
Sclerotherapy is a treatment to reduce the appearance of noticeable capillaries, varicose veins, or spider veins. In response to the treatment, the body reroutes the blood through healthier vessels and reabsorbs the collapsed vein.
Dr. Platt collapses the affected blood vessel with a salt solution injectable or uses a laser to destroy tiny blood vessels. The treatment usually takes less than a half-hour, and you can drive yourself home afterward.
Why do people undergo sclerotherapy?
Many people undergo sclerotherapy for aesthetic purposes. Unsightly varicose veins make some people feel self-conscious and dissatisfied with their appearance. Others use sclerotherapy to remove veins that cause pain, swelling, and cramps.
Am I a candidate for sclerotherapy?
Only your doctor can determine if you’re a good candidate for sclerotherapy, so you must have an initial consultation with Dr. Platt so she can make the call.
Generally speaking, if you’re in good health, you’re not pregnant or breastfeeding, you’ve never had a blood clot, and the vein in question isn’t usable for bypass surgery, you should be eligible for sclerotherapy.
If you’ve had a blood clot before, you may still be able to have sclerotherapy. Dr. Platt asks about the source of the clot to determine whether or not you’re eligible.
What happens after the procedure?
Dr. Platt provides care instructions after the procedure. She encourages walking and compression stockings to promote proper circulation and prevent clots. You can drive yourself home and resume most of your normal activities, but it’s best to avoid the following for 48 hours afterward:
Anti-inflammatory medication (i.e. ibuprofen and aspirin)
- Smokers tend to have more wrinkles than non-smokers.
- Hot baths, whirlpools, and saunas
- Hot compresses
- Direct sunlight
- Aerobic activity
You may experience some slight, temporary side effects such as bruising and swelling. They should disappear within a few days.
You may need multiple treatments to see the best results. After one treatment, spider veins typically fade within three to six weeks while larger veins may take three to four months to show improvement. Dr. Platt may schedule a follow-up appointment to assess the results and determine if you should have another treatment.
If you have painful, unsightly veins in your legs, schedule a consultation with Dr. Platt to discuss your options.