The Leg Vein Doctor
Spider Veins, Sclerotherapy, Spider Vein Removal
Direct and Magnified vision sclerotherapy is recognized as the "Gold Standard" in the treatment of spider veins or telangiectasia which are visible on the surface of the skin.
This is a long established technique, which involves precise injection of the small vessels with either a sclerosant solution or foam. There are three broad classes of sclerosants in general use around the world today and they all attempt to achieve the same outcome. Sclerosants cause irreversible damage to the inner most layer of the three layers found in the vein wall. Following sclerotherapy, the veins attempt to repair the injury. The result of this process is that the opposing walls inside the vein permanently adhere together and eventually scar tissue develops, replacing the lumen of the vein, this process is called sclerosis. A sclerosed vein transitions over time to a fibrous cord and will eventually disappear as the body’s on-going repair mechanism removes this redundant tissue.
Spider veins develop as a result of back pressure from larger feeding veins which are seen slightly deeper under the skin. These feeding veins are called “Reticular veins” and they are usually easy to identify because they have a bluish colour and are often seen in a central position wherever there is a network of spider veins. In order to get successful results in treating spider veins treatment of these reticular veins are also required. Poor results and complications of treatment such as “matting” are often the result of failing to identify and properly treat these reticular veins.
Treatment of spider veins with microsclerotherapy unfortunately does not provide an immediate benefit. Moreover, it may require several months to complete a course of treatment depending on the extent of involvement. Because very tiny needles are used the procedure is usually not too uncomfortable. It is usual for most patients to require more than one course of treatment. After one course of treatment there is usually a 70-80% improvement. For patients with a substantial number of spider veins then three treatment sessions spread over the course of three months are undertaken. The process that causes spider veins is a chronic condition, so there is a tendency for them to recur over a period of time, though the doctor will never be able to answer confidently how long this period will be. Therefore a maintenance treatment session may be required every few years.
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