What is Sclerotherapy?
Sclerotherapy is a technique for the removal of spider veins. Veincare specialists uses one of two solutions called sclerosants. The first is called Sclerovein (Polidocanolum 600 and Ethanolum, Resinag AG). The second type is called Fibrovein (Sodium Tetradecyl Sulphate, STD pharmaceuticals). Both contain an irritant chemical that, when injected into the vein, cause inflammation to the lining of the vein. The walls of the vein then stick together and the blood stops flowing through them. After the injections, you may be asked to wear a pair of surgical stockings to help squash the vein. You will need to wear them for about 5 days, night and day.
Sclerovein is no longer licensed for use in the United Kingdom. This means we may only be able to use Fibrovein for the treatment of spider veins.
What happens when I have sclerotherapy?
Sclerotherapy is done as an outpatient procedure. In one of our Veincare clinics, you will be asked to lie on a couch, using a tiny needle that is almost painless a small amounts of the sclerosant is injected into the vein (see the video)
If your spider veins look a little like a bush then we can usually treat the whole are with only one or two injections. Sometimes more injections are required.
After the injections, there may be a little bleeding from the ‘pin-prick’. Plasters like ‘Band-Aids’ are used to cover the injection site. These can be removed later the same day.
What happens after sclerotherapy?
There will be a reaction in the area treated. The skin often turns pink and the spider veins can look much worse than before treatment. This is NORMAL. With time, the redness settles and becomes brown in colour as your body removes the treated vein.
The whole process can take several weeks so it is probably best to plan treatments when you do not want to expose your legs. Most patients have their sclerotherapy done in the Autumn or Winter. This gives time for the treatment to work, ready for the summer.
Do I need to restrict my activities after sclerotherapy?
No. After the treatment, you can walk out of the clinic and return to normal activities. Only if you have been asked to wear stockings will you need to abstain from some things. This will be discussed with you.
Are there any problems with sclerotherapy?
Rarely some people can have an allergic reaction to the injection.
Immediately after the injections, the skin becomes red and looks worse than before the injection. This redness settles down over a few days but the final result is not always complete for several months.
Your skin may become blistered at the site of an injection but this will heal.
The skin can get a brown discolouration where the injection has been but this is often not as obvious as the veins that have been injected
The veins can come back.
Very tiny red veins that look like matting can develop at the site of injections. This happens rarely and cannot be predicted. The matting can be treated with veinwave or laser therapy.