Sclerotherapy uses an injection of a special chemical (sclerosant) into a varicose vein to damage and scar the inside lining of the vein. This causes the vein to close.
After the injection of sclerosant is given, pressure is applied on the veins to prevent blood return when you stand up. You may need to wear compression stockings or elastic bandages for several days or weeks to maintain the pressure.
There are various types of damage to the venous system and depending on their types, appropriate treatment is carried out. One of the surgical elimination methods of varicose veins is compression sclerotherapy. It is also used successfully for cosmetic removal of vascular spider veins on the thigh or ankle area. The advantage of sclerotherapy is the possibility for the surgery to be performed on an outpatient basis without anaesthesia in a short time period and without any tissue injury.
Treatment with this method does not require taking days off work.
How does it work?
Under the influence of the administered drug, the intimal blood vessel gets irritated and then the repair process begins by special cells producing fibrin. They get bigger in the irritated vessel, causing total fibrosis and definitive exclusion from the venous system.
Shortly after the injection external pressure dressing is applied, causing the walls of the irritated vessel closer. The process of fibrosis occurs more rapidly and the varicose vein is permanently closed. The Fibrous varicose vein will reduce in size overtime.
The body is partially able to absorb the fibrous vessel (even totally in the case of vascular spider veins) and after a while the varicose veins become completely invisible. Healing depends on the diameter of the vein and illness severity (from 4 weeks to 6 months).
How to prepare?
Before the surgery it is recommended to take Rutinoscorbin (contains Rutosidum and Acidum ascorbicum) for 2-3 weeks – about 4-6 tablets a day. It is also recommended taking this drug during convalescence after surgery.
How long does the treatment take?
It takes usually about 10-30 minutes. Injection mostly involves a selected part of the leg, e.g.: The thigh or lower leg. If a large number of small vascular spider veins are also treated, the area of surgery is limited to the skin fragment, ranging from 100-200 cm2.
After surgery, the patient should walk for 20-30 minutes in the pressure dressing. The patient can not sit, stand or lie down in this time. Pressure dressing on the leg should be used from 5-14 days, depending on the physician’s recommendation.
Over the period of bandage application, having an active lifestyle is necessary. At least a one hour walk daily. The patient supposed to avoid prolonged standing or sitting.
The dressing will cause slight swelling of the ankles or feet, but it will disappear shortly after taking it off. Slight soreness is a temporary phenomenon. When a large swelling accompanied by pain or other symptoms occurs, a medical consultation is needed.
Sclerotherapy is a safe method, but sometimes you may experience side effects. It is always good to refer to the doctor any concerns regarding reaction of the body after surgery.
Unwanted ailments may occur in the form of:
- Allergic reactions such as urticaria after injection of drugs
- Bruising, redness and soreness of injected vein
- Abrasions of the skin from the bandage