Capitol Vein Blog

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

Is Sclerotherapy Right For You?

Sclerotherapy is the most effective treatment for spider veins. The treatment is performed using a tiny needle, through which we inject special medications (such as Asclera, which is FDA approved for this purpose) that allow the body to absorb small surface veins. The method has been in use for many decades and is extremely safe as well as being effective, but not all patients are candidates for this treatment.

Sclerotherapy works best on little veins only a few millimeters in diameter. It is not the best way to treat most varicose veins, which are typically large enough to protrude from the skin's surface. Simply injecting the varicose veins without knowing their cause leads to poor results, patient dissatisfaction, and worse.

When varicose veins are visible or suspected, we will use ultrasound to investigate the entire venous system of the leg. This enables us to determine why the veins are present and what the best treatment will be. Unlike with spider veins, which are largely cosmetic, most patients with varicose veins experience symptoms that include aching, heaviness, mild leg swelling and even restless legs.  Untreated, varicose veins may lead to skin ulcers and permanent discoloration of the lower leg.

Once the ultrasound shows the origin of a patient's varicose veins, we treat the "feeder vein" with the Venefit Procedure (VNUS Closure). This office-based procedure uses thermal energy to seal the vein closed and eliminate the source of the varicose veins. Patients can resume normal activity immediately afterward.

When patients and physicians are aware of the success and ease of treatment, they often rethink varicose vein treatment and see the full benefit of the procedure. If you have questions about your spider or varicose veins, please see Dr. Rosenberg or Dr. McNeill at the Maryland, Virginia or West Virginia offices, where free evaluations are available.

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