Spider Vein Treatment
Are you embarrassed by the way your legs look in shorts or skirts because of your spider veins? At Musick Dermatology, we can treat those unsightly veins with a safe and effective treatment called sclerotherapy.
Our practice is led by our medical director and board-certified dermatologist, Dr. Steven Musick. Our team of trusted providers is thrilled to help you eliminate your spider veins quickly and safely using sclerotherapy.
What are Spider Veins?
Spider veins (telangiectasias) are small, thin blood vessels visible beneath the skin. They usually develop on the face or legs and may look like a series of thin tree branches or strands of a spider web. Although most spider veins are only a cosmetic issue, for some people they can cause uncomfortable symptoms such as aching, burning, swelling and leg-cramping.
Spider veins are extremely common, affecting nearly half of the adult population of the United States. Many patients are bothered when spider veins develop on prominent areas such as the legs or face and seek treatment to eliminate them. Many spider-vein treatments are highly effective and minimally invasive, offering aesthetically pleasing results without painful or lengthy downtime.
Causes Of And Risk Factors For Spider Veins
Spider veins develop from a backflow of blood in the veins. This condition, which results from damaged valves in the veins, is called “venous reflux.” As blood collects in these veins, their walls distend. This increases the size of the veins and makes them visible under the surface of the skin. Risk factors for developing spider veins include the following:
- Increasing age
- Hormonal changes
- Lack of exercise
- Sun exposure
Having a family history of spider veins is also a risk factor for developing them.
Diagnosis And Treatment Of Spider Veins
Spider veins, which are diagnosed through a physical examination of the patient, an analysis of symptoms and, sometimes, diagnostic ultrasound, can be treated in a number of ways, all of which are minimally invasive.
The simplest solution for treating spider veins is for the patient to wear compression stockings, which put pressure on the affected veins and promote blood flow back to the heart. This method is designed to control the symptoms of spider veins, not remove them.
Sclerotherapy involves injecting a sclerosant, a solution designed to collapse them, into the veins. This procedure is performed in a doctor’s office. Each treatment takes 15-30 minutes, and a typical patient requires one to three treatments.
Endovenous Laser Treatment
Endovenous laser treatment (EVLT), which is also called “laser ablation,” consists of inserting a catheter with a laser probe attached to it directly into the vein. The laser heat seals off the damaged vein, and diverts blood flow to healthier vessels.
The above treatments have fewer side effects, cause less pain and have shorter recovery times than traditional surgical-vein-removal procedures.
Prevention Of Spider Veins
Although there is no sure way to prevent spider veins, making certain lifestyle changes may reduce the risk of developing them. Lifestyle changes include losing weight, exercising regularly, and wearing support stockings and comfortable, flat shoes. It is also important to move the legs frequently, especially during long periods of sitting or standing in one place.
How does sclerotherapy work?
When you come in for your initial free consultation, you’ll meet with one of our trusted providers to determine if sclerotherapy is right for you and your particular type of veins.
Once we determine that it is, your provider will use a tiny needle to inject a salt water solution directly into the vein. The solution is so salty that it eliminates the vein and the blood re-routes to deeper veins.
Upon completion of your procedure, your legs will be wrapped for 6-8 hours, then you will be free to go back to your normal activities!
Is this a permanent result?
Yes, this is a permanent solution, but only for those particular veins that you had treated. Additional spider veins in other areas may develop over, and you may wish to come in for additional treatments.
Is there any downtime?
Although there is typically no downtime after your sclerotherapy procedure, we do encourage our patients to avoid strenuous activity for the rest of the day of the procedure. We also suggest avoiding running, heavy lifting, and any form of lower body exercise. It is best that you take walks and also avoid sitting or standing in one place for more than one to two hours. All of these recommendations are just for the day of the procedure.
Is sclerotherapy covered by insurance?
Under most circumstances, spider veins are a cosmetic procedure and therefore not covered by health insurance. If you have bulging veins, your condition may be caused by having a vascular disease, and it may be covered by insurance. Your provider will explain your available options.
Is there a cost for the consultation?
Our initial cosmetic consultations are complimentary. We look forward to discussing your cosmetic options with you!
Schedule a Consultation
Are you ready to book your complimentary consultation with Musick Dermatology and start your journey towards a younger-looking you? Contact us today or schedule your appointment by phone at 618-628-2588!