Two Varicose Vein Treatment Options To Discuss With Your Doctor

Posted on: 22 September 2022

If you have varicose veins, you might be wondering if having them removed is a good idea and what's involved. Talk to a varicose vein treatment specialist for advice. The first thing they may do is an ultrasound to map your veins. An ultrasound allows the doctor to visualize the veins under your skin so they can determine the right treatment for you. Sclerotherapy and endovenous laser treatments are two popular choices. Here's how they work.

1. Sclerotherapy Involves An Injection

Sclerotherapy can be done on small spider veins as well as larger varicose veins. The procedure involves injecting a solution directly into the vein that causes inflammation and scarring. As scars develop, the vein closes off and is absorbed by your body as time goes on.

Sclerotherapy usually doesn't provide immediate results since it takes time for the veins to disappear. The procedure isn't painful, although you may feel cramping in the vein when the solution is injected. After you've had this treatment, your doctor might recommend you take it easy for a few days and avoid things like aerobic exercise. However, there is no long recovery time needed for sclerotherapy varicose vein treatment.

2. Endovenous Laser Ablation Uses Heat

Endovenous laser ablation works in a similar way as sclerotherapy in that the vein is injured so it closes off, dies, and is absorbed by the body. However, instead of injecting a substance, the varicose vein treatment specialist uses heat from a laser fiber. The fiber is inserted directly into the vein being treated.

To do this, your doctor will probably need to use an ultrasound machine to guide the laser fiber toward your vein. You might also need a small incision for inserting the fiber, but since it's small, you may not need stitches to close it. Endovenous laser ablation could be painful, so your doctor will probably give you a local anesthetic so you don't feel anything.

When the laser heats up the vein, it causes damage that causes the vein to shrivel and be absorbed by your body. That will take time to complete, so like sclerotherapy, the results aren't usually noticeable right away. Your doctor ensures you have plenty of healthy veins for blood circulation when they do the vein mapping with your initial ultrasound, so you don't have to worry about circulation problems once your varicose vein or veins are gone.

You may need a short recovery time after this type of varicose vein removal treatment. Your doctor will send recovery instructions home with you that you should comply with for a quick and uneventful recovery. These instructions may include avoiding hot baths and aggressive exercise for a few days.

For more information, contact a local varicose vein treatment specialist.