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Cosmetic Sclerotherapy

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Sclerotherapy

  1. What is sclerotherapy?
  2. How safe is sclerotherapy?
  3. Can the sclerotherapy solutions cause an allergic reaction?
  4. Are there any other side effects that may occur?
  5. Who should not receive sclerotherapy?
  6. What to avoid before sclerotherapy?
  7. Are there any medicines I shouldn’t take prior to sclerotherapy?
  8. Are compression stockings really beneficial?
  9. How soon after the injections will the veins disappear?
  10. How may sessions will it take?
  11. Once the veins have been treated can they come back?

Varicose veins are an extremely common disorder affecting about one half of the population. Although most venous disease sufferers are women, men are also afflicted. For these people, everyday life is often disrupted by leg cramps, swelling, itching and burning in the legs. The exact cause of varicosities is unknown, but some of the risk factors are heredity, pregnancy, menopause, obesity, prolonged standing or sitting, estrogen, birth control pills, tight girdles, trauma and aging.

What is sclerotherapy?
Sclerotherapy is a non-surgical procedure that involves injecting a medication into a diseased dilated vein or spider vein. This causes a reaction within the wall of the vein allowing it to close and route the blood back to the heart. The unsightly veins disappear.

How safe is sclerotherapy?
Sclerotherapy is extremely safe. There are many different types of solutions that may be injected and each one carries its own risk. Because of the different vein sizes, pigmentation of the skin and veins’ location, different solutions and concentrations are frequently employed on an individual basis. Feel free to ask Dr. Murray what types and concentrations he would recommend in your individual case.

Can the sclerotherapy solutions cause an allergic reaction?
Despite a detailed history and exam, there is always the possibility of an allergic reaction. This, however, is extremely rare. This rare complication may range from slight tingling sensations to hives and even an anaphylactoid reaction. Extremely rare cases of deep vein thrombosis and pulmonary embolus have been reported in the medical literature.

Are there any other side effects that may occur?
There are two other RARE complications that may arise from sclerotherapy. In some patients there are superficial A-V malformations (arterial-venous abnormality) and if one of these are injected, a small ulcer may appear on the skin. Secondly, a small amount of sclerosing solution may spill into the subcutaneous tissue. Both of these may leave a small scar on the skin.

Who should not receive sclerotherapy?
People who have connective tissue diseases such as Lupus, Discoid Lupus, P.S.S. – Progressive Systemic Sclerosis, CREST and Rheumatoid and Psoriatic Arthritis, and Hemophiliacs.

What to avoid before sclerotherapy?
– Do not apply oil or lotion on your legs 24 hours prior to treatment.

– Do not shave or wax your legs 24 hours prior to treatment.

Are there any medicines I shouldn’t take prior to sclerotherapy?
Avoid the use of aspirin or other anticoagulant for one week prior to treatment. If you are currently taking iron supplements this may add to skin staining risk.

After sclerotherapy recommendations:
– Exercise for 30 minutes after treatment by walking, biking or using exercise equipment involving leg motion.

– Wear compression stockings or special bandages continuously for 48 hours after treatment.

– Wear compression stockings for a few weeks after treatment.

– Wear compression or support stockings as often as possible.

– Continue a normal routine as usual after your treatment, simply emphasize your exercise (walking, swimming, aerobics).

– Do not sunbathe for two weeks after treatment.

– Avoid training with free weights for two weeks after treatment.

– Avoid hot baths and whirlpools.

– Avoid constrictive girdles.

Are compression stockings really beneficial?
ALL of the literature published to date reports improvement with compression stockings worn after sclerotherapy. For your convenience, the stockings are available at The Murray Center. The stockings are very thin, come in seven different colors and are very aesthetic.

How soon after the injections will the veins disappear?
Different sized veins disappear at different rates, but usually we ask you to wait 3-6 weeks before evaluating the results. There is, however, disappearance up to 12 weeks from the time of the injection.

How may sessions will it take?
This question has to be answered on an individual basis. However, we do offer three levels of services depending on your severity – full sessions, limited sessions, and mini sessions.

Once the veins have been treated can they come back?
No, once treated those veins are gone forever. However, new veins may develop in the future.

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