Sclerotherapy is a technique that is used to get rid of spider veins and smaller varicose veins close to the surface of the leg. The procedure involves injecting a solution directly into the vein, causing the walls of the vein to seal shut so it eventually disappears from view. This procedure is considered non-invasive and most patients are back to their normal activities right after treatment. In addition to the legs, Sclerotherapy can be used on the hands, arms and face, if spider veins appear in those areas.
To perform the sclerotherapy procedure, the patient is usually given a topical anesthetic to make the treatment more comfortable. A small needle is inserted directly into the vein, and the sclerosing agent is injected. Some patients report experiencing a mild burning or stinging while the solution is going into the vein, but the discomfort is generally short-lived. The entire process usually takes less than 30 minutes to complete and patients are encouraged to return to normal activities right away. The results of sclerotherapy typically begin to be seen within about a month. Patients may need more than one sclerotherapy session to achieve desired results.