How to Treat Varicose Veins - Sclerotherapy

Varicose and Spider Veins

Mayo Clinic
Mayo Clinic

Sclerotherapy Facts

Sclerotherapy is a very commonly done procedure to treat spider and varicose veins. Almost 400,000 procedures were completed in the United States in 2010.

These veins are found primarily on the lower legs, thighs and sometimes on the face. In the United States there are 80 million people suffering from this problem and over 50% are women over the age of 21 according to the American Society of Plastic Surgeons.

Symptoms of Varicose Veins

The typical symptoms of varicose veins:

  • Cramping
  • Swelling
  • Itching
  • Night cramps
  • Fatigue

There are also some possible complications for untreated varicose veins that include thrombophletis, which in the formation of a blood clot, and possible ulcerations. Fibrotic and scarred skin (called stasis dermatitis) can also occur. They occur more frequently in pregnant women.

Varicose and Spider Vein Treatment

People are often embarrassed by the look of these unattractive veins. Compression stockings may help the discomfort and also prevent new vein problems. Elevating the legs when sitting or when sleeping may also be helpful. Age and obesity increase the possibility of having this vein problem.

Sclerotherapy is the procedure to treat spider veins or varicose veins by a physician is very simple. It is done in a physician's office and has proven to be successful over many years. A chemical sclerant is injected into the vein, which causes the vein to collapse. The vein will disappear in a few weeks. Blood is forced into healthier veins after this procedure. The full procedure only lasts for 15-30 minutes.

This procedure is often repeated three or four times, depending on the size of the vein and the number of veins being treated. Side effect are rare, except for some slight bruising. It is suggested that walking following the procedure helps to improve good circulation, and it will prevent blood clots.

Sclerotherapy Varicose Vein Treatment


If you have small varicose veins wearing tight stockings designed for this problem may help the condition from further progressing. Sit or lie down and put your feet up higher than your heart for a few minutes when you get a chance.

Sclerotherapy relieves the symptoms immediately and improves the appearance of the patient. A major benefit is there is no down time following the treatment, and there is almost no discomfort.

The physicians prefer that the patients are non-smokers, and they want patients that are in good health. Sclerotherapy is not done on pregnant women.

Spider and Varicose Veins

Do you have spider or varicose veins and have you had sclerotherapy?

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© 2012 Pamela Oglesby

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Comments 26 comments

billybuc profile image

billybuc 4 years ago from Olympia, WA

Interesting information, Pamela! I do not have this problem; nor does Bev. Thankfully! Merry Christmas and Happy New Year to you and yours.

fpherj48 profile image

fpherj48 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

I couldn't vote because my comment is, "I do have horrible varicose veins and do intend to have them treated....soon." I thank you for this informative hub. I've had them for years, but of course, they have worsened with time.

Oddly, my left leg is far worse than my right. I've done a little research on how these ugly, uncomfortable veins can be taken care of...but your hub is really a great help to me......Thanks!..UP++

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 4 years ago from United States Author

Thank you for the comments. I hope you have a wonderful Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 4 years ago from United States Author

Paula, I got some veins on my right leg when I was pregnant. I had this procedure and it was so simple. Good luck with getting yours done. Thanks for your comments.

drbj profile image

drbj 4 years ago from south Florida

Very interesting information about sclerotherapy, Pamela, which should be useful to many readers. Thanks for your time and research.

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 4 years ago from United States Author

drbj, Thank you so much for your comments.

tillsontitan profile image

tillsontitan 4 years ago from New York

Very interesting Pamela. I don't think there are too many woman out there over the age of 40 who can say they have neither spider veins or varicose veins.

Like Effer, I've had both with varicose being worse for years. Mine are also worse in the left leg...hmmm, I may have to look that up!

Voted this hub up and useful.

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 4 years ago from United States Author

tillsontian, I agree with you on the women over 40. Thanks so much for your comments.

always exploring profile image

always exploring 4 years ago from Southern Illinois

This is interesting, I am so glad you keep up on the new techniques in medicine. Fortunately i don't have this problem, but it's nice to know it can be taken care of with little down-time. Thank you..Voted up..

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 4 years ago from United States Author

Ruby, You are fortunate to not have this problem. I appreciate your comments as always.

kashmir56 profile image

kashmir56 4 years ago from Massachusetts

Very interesting and informative hub, it will help anyone who my have this problem. Well done !

Vote up and more !!!

Wishing you a very Merry Christmas !

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 4 years ago from United States Author

Kashmire, Thank you so much for your comments. Merry Christmas to you also.

tammyswallow profile image

tammyswallow 4 years ago from North Carolina

I am so glad I don't have this condition.. yet. It is good to know there are treatments out there. Great hub with some useful resources!

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 4 years ago from United States Author

Tammy, You are fortunate to not have this problem but the treatment does work quite well. Thanks for your comments.

carolina muscle profile image

carolina muscle 4 years ago from Charlotte, North Carolina

My Grandmother used to have a serious problem with varicose veins, and it really bothered her throughout her later life.... I guess her only option back then were those compression stockings, because I certainly remember her wearing them.

Interesting Hub as always, Pamela !!!

MartieCoetser profile image

MartieCoetser 4 years ago from South Africa

Oh, I am so glad I came to your corner to read a hub of yours and especially this one, Pamela. For the past year I am suffering something in this line. Unbearable, nagging pain, according to my senses due to swelling and blood pooling in the legs. I do have some spider veins, but apparently not enough to bother my GP. He reckons I should only walk more and sit less. Now how does a writer and bookkeeper sit less and walk more? I have to sleep with my legs in the air for at least 3 hours just to have some quick passing relief. I am totally fed-up! And those stockings don't make it better. My medical aid will be in order by February, then I will go for proper treatment by a specialist.

Maybe sclerotherapy is what I need.... in veins I cannot see...... ?????

Maybe new valves? New veins?

Oh, I am so fed-up!

A link to this hub goes straight to my personal library.

Thank you, Pam. I know you thought of me when you wrote this hub, as I've asked you before for information concerning veins in the legs.

Voted up, useful, interesting, awesome and well-presented. As always.

farmloft profile image

farmloft 4 years ago from Michigan

I wonder if there's an age limit on whether someone could get this treatment?

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 4 years ago from United States Author

Chris, That was about the only option back then. Thanks for your comments.

Martie, I hope you find a good doctor that will fix the problem. Scleroptherapy works well, so maybe that will be the answer for you. I appreciate your comments.

Farmloft, I do not know of an age limit, but a phone call to a doctor's office that does this procedure will answer your question for sure.

teaches12345 profile image

teaches12345 4 years ago

This is new and good information for many of us. I do not have this problem, but it's always good to keep informed. Thank you! Blessings.

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 4 years ago from United States Author

Dianne, You are fortunate to not have this problem. Thanks so much for your comments.

pstraubie48 profile image

pstraubie48 4 years ago from sunny Florida

This is very interesting. I had no idea. Both of my parents had to have surgery for huge varicose veins (which some have said are from being overweight but neither of them were). The surgery was risky and recovery took some time.

This is a great alternative to surgery. Thank you for sharing this with us.

Happy New Year. Sending Angels to you :) ps

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 4 years ago from United States Author

pstraiboe, You are right about the surgery. I hope you do not inherit the problem but at least you have a less painful way to take care of it if you do. Thanks so much for your comments. Happy New Year and thanks for the angels. I am sending some to you too.

Peggy W profile image

Peggy W 4 years ago from Houston, Texas

Good hub Pamela regarding the treatment for varicose veins with Sclerotherapy. Am sure that many people will find this hub to be very informative. Up and useful votes. Will also share.

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 4 years ago from United States Author

Peggy, Many women have this problem, so I thought it would be a useful hub. Thanks so much for your comments and the share.

pstraubie48 profile image

pstraubie48 4 years ago from sunny Florida

My Momma had varicose veins in her early fifties. She was not overweight at all. Her one leg had such bad varicose veins she had surgery. My Father also had them and also had surgery. Praise God, I do not have them. My sisters have many spider veins and are not able to have treatments due to other medical conditions.

This is hopeful information, Pamela, for those who are plagued with this problem

Sending you many Angels and blessings this evening :) ps

Pamela99 profile image

Pamela99 4 years ago from United States Author

Patricia, Varicose veins can happen to anyone and are common with pregnancy. You are lucky you don't have them since both parents do. I appreciate your comments. God bless you and thank you for the angels.

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