in Fort Worth, TX
What is Sclerotherapy?
One sure sign that you’re getting older is the appearance of tiny clusters of squiggly clusters of red, purple, and blue lines on your thighs, calves, and ankles. Spider veins. Taking their name from their web-like appearance, spider veins aren’t usually painful but no one likes to see them show up on their legs. Dr. Menzies uses sclerotherapy to treat spider veins and smaller varicose veins.
What are spider veins?
Spider veins are small superficial clusters of veins that are close to the skin surface. Because they are carrying dark, de-oxygenated blood, they are visible on the skin surface. They are common in women as they age. There is a genetic component to developing spider veins, as well.
How is sclerotherapy performed?
Dr. Menzies uses a very tiny needle for sclerotherapy. Spider veins are near the surface of the skin, so the injections to address them do not need to be at much depth. Because of this, patients usually say the feeling of the procedure is akin to that of a pinprick.
At the start of your session, Dr. Menzies and you will discuss the spider veins and smaller varicose veins you’d like to remove. He then injects the sclerosant solution directly into the vein. At Southwest Vein & Leg Center, we use Asclera, an FDA-approved sclerosant solution that irritates the walls of the vein, causing them to collapse. This closes off the vein and any minor amount of blood running through it is instantly redirected to a healthier nearby vein. The vein instantly diminishes in appearance. Over the next few weeks, the body scavenges and removes the unused vein.
What should I expect during the sclerotherapy treatment?
These treatments with Dr. Menzies take only a few minutes, depending on how many spider veins you want to target. You’ll lie on our exam table and Dr. Menzies begins to inject the Asclera. Each vein cluster may take a couple of injections, but they close off instantly once the sclerosant has been injected into or next to the unwanted veins. Most of these veins instantly fade from view. Some still show traces, but they will fade away over the next weeks as the body scavenges and removes the unused veins.
Is Sclerotherapy for Spider Veins permanent?
Once Dr. Menzies injects these veins they close off. They will not reopen, and the body will dispose of them over the next few weeks. They are gone for good. However, that doesn’t mean you can’t develop new spider veins.
How can I prepare for Sclerotherapy?
There is no preparation needed.
Recovery after Sclerotherapy
Dr. Menzies recommends that you wear compression hose during waking hours for one to two weeks. This is especially true if you had a number of veins treated. The pressure applied by these hose improves the body’s ability to immediately start absorbing these closed-off veins. Otherwise, walking and moderate exercise are fine immediately after your procedure. You should avoid any really strenuous exercise for about one week, however.
Is sclerotherapy painful?
Patients worry that these injections will be painful, but they are not. Dr. Menzies injects the sclerosant with a very tiny needle and only to a shallow depth. Patients equate the feeling of these injections to that of a pinprick.
Is sclerotherapy covered by insurance?
Because spider veins are considered a cosmetic nuisance rather than a health issue, these sclerotherapy treatments are usually not covered by health insurance. We provide them on a cash pay basis and we offer several options for payment.