Sclerotherapy and surgery of leg veins
The precise origin of leg veins is unknown, but reports have shown that heredity, pregnancy, hormonal changes, weight gain or leg injury may influence the occurrence of leg spider veins. Also occupations that require standing are more at risk. Patients with leg veins complain of the unsightly appearance of the veins, and often report heaviness and swelling of the legs and feet.
|Sclerotherapy one session before after(Dany Touma, M.D.) |
Does sclerotherapy work for everyone?
The majority of sclerotherapy treatments performed result in significant improvement. Unfortunately, there is no guarantee that the treatment will be effective in every case. A small percentage of patients who undergo sclerotherapy may have poor to fair results.
What results will you see and how soon after sclerotherapy
The result can be immediate, however, it usually takes several weeks of healing to be achieved. Each vein usually requires one to three treatments. The veins disappear over a period of 2 weeks to 3 months. This treatment does not prevent new telangiectasia from developing.
Laser treatment of leg veins
Laser is ideal for vessels that are too small, that have failed sclerotherapy, or in patients that have allergic reactions to the sclerosants used in sclerotherapy. Lasers are very effective in treating small veins, but are usually not recommended for the larger blue veins, or in the presence of dark skin.
|Leg veins before and after 2 sessions of sclerotherapy. (Dany Touma, M.D.) |
Surgery for leg veins (ambulatory phlebectomy)
In some cases, a minor surgical procedure to remove the veins under local anesthesia can be done, and is indicated for some of the larger veins that can be felt with the finger.
What should I expect after treatment?
Compression will need to be worn for the first 24 hours, then during waking hours for 5 days. Compression is not necessary when treatment is done with laser.
After sclerotherapy there might be some redness or swelling for 1-2 days. Tenderness is common and resolves after a few hours. Cramping may occasionally occur.
Occasionally there is bruising for a few days or weeks, but this resolves always.After laser, the skin turns purple and red for 1-10 days. Some temporary pigmentation changes may follow but they always resolve with time. It is recommended to protect the skin from sun exposure before and after laser sessions.