Sclerotherapy is the method of eliminating superficial telangiectases (“spider veins”) and varicose veins by the injection of a solution or foam called a “sclerosing agent.” A tiny needle is threaded into the unwanted vein and a small amount of the sclerosing agent is gently injected. The injection “flushes out” the blood temporarily and produces inflammation in the wall of the blood vessel. This interaction produces “sclerosis” or the formation of fibrous tissue within the vessel, leading to its gradual disappearance. Most patients are impressed by the minimal discomfort and “down time” associated with this out-patient procedure.
The exact sclerosing agent to be used for a particular vein will depend on it size, color, and location. The optimum treatment for any patient involves tailoring the therapy to the specific types of unwanted vessels in that person’s legs, and this can vary greatly. Only after a careful examination by a physician skilled in leg vein problems can an appropriate treatment plan be created.