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The Ins and Outs of Sclerotherapy

December 06, 2016

What are varicose veins?

Varicose veins are a result of the inability of blood to return to the heart from the legs because of improper valve function. As a result, blood collects and the bulging, or swelling of the veins, causes a back-pressure within the affected veins and, as a result, all of the connected veins get bigger. They can be painful and unsightly, causing the affected patient great discontent.

Sclerotherapy involves injecting a solution directly into the problem vein. The solution irritates the lining of the vein, causing it to swell and stick together. Over time, the vessel will scar, and fade.

Who wants sclerotherapy?

Typically, people that are most interested in the benefits of sclerotherapy have complaints similar to these:

  • “I hate my legs. I always try to hide them.”
  • “My legs are aching, burning, throbbing, itchy, feel heavy, and full.”
  • “My legs only feel better when I’m lying down, why is that?”
  • “My legs totally changed as a result of my last pregnancy! These veins are terrible.”


Who cannot have this procedure?

You are unable to have sclerotherapy if any of the following apply to you:

  • Pregnant
  • Unable to walk
  • Possibility of heart bypass surgery (as this surgery may require particular veins for your heart)
  • Recent diagnosis of blood clots
  • Take the prescription Coumadin
  • Have a current Infection or rash on the legs
  • Prior failures with sclerotherapy



Avoid all anti-inflammatories like aspirin and herbal medications. Avoid all lotions and moisturizers on your legs. Purchase compression stockings in preparation for after treatment.



Showers are permitted, but the water should be cooler than usual. Use only a mild soap to wash the injection sites. The compression stockings should be worn all day and all night for the first couple of days.

For 48 hours, there should be no:

  • Hot baths
  • Direct exposure to sunlight
  • Hot compresses
  • Saunas


How successful is it?

50-80% of injected veins will respond to each session of sclerotherapy. Veins that respond to treatment will typically not reappear. Less than 10% of the people who have sclerotherapy do not respond to the injections at all. Sclerotherapy is a great option for those that are dissatisfied with the appearance of their legs and with its current success rate only improving, is well worth the relative trouble of the procedure.

Give us a call today at (360) 733-2557 to schedule a consultation to learn more about the benefits and details of this treatment.


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