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Centers for Pain Control and Vein Care

Pain Management Physicians & Vein Specialists located across Northwest Indiana

Sclerotherapy has a long-standing history of safely and effectively treating spider veins and varicose veins. Whether you want to improve your appearance or you need to alleviate pain and restore normal circulation, this treatment can help. The vein specialists at Centers for Pain Control and Vein Care in Hobart, LaPorte, Merrillville, Munster, and Valparaiso, Indiana, have years of experience performing sclerotherapy to permanently eliminate existing visible veins. To learn if you’re a good candidate, call the nearest office, or schedule an appointment using the online booking system.

Sclerotherapy Q & A

What is sclerotherapy?

Sclerotherapy is the top treatment for spider veins, and it’s also frequently used to eliminate varicose veins. During a sclerotherapy procedure, your provider injects a medication into the visible veins.

The medication, called a sclerosing agent, makes the vein walls collapse and turn into scar tissue. Your body gradually reabsorbs the treated tissues, which makes the veins disappear. Then your body also restores normal circulation by rerouting blood flow through a healthy vein.

What causes spider veins and varicose veins?

Spider and varicose veins both develop when one-way valves in the veins stop functioning. Normally, these valves keep blood flowing in one direction, heading back toward your heart.

When the valves become weak or damaged, they allow blood to reflux in the wrong direction. As a result, the blood accumulates in the vein, making the vein enlarge and become visible.

The difference between spider veins and varicose veins is the size of the vein. Spider veins develop in tiny veins near the skin’s surface, causing a web-like network of dark red, purple, or blue veins.

By comparison, varicose veins occur when blood backs up in moderate to large veins in your legs. These veins become engorged and twisted, and if they’re near the surface, they bulge out from your skin.

What should I expect during sclerotherapy?

Though the procedure is similar for spider and varicose veins, there are some slight differences:

Spider vein sclerotherapy

Since spider veins are so small, patients generally don’t need a topical anesthesia. You simply relax on the treatment table, and your provider uses a fine needle to inject the solution into the veins. 

Varicose vein sclerotherapy

When using sclerotherapy to treat varicose veins, your provider may use a liquid or Varithena®, a type of foam medication. The foam is needed for larger veins because it expands to reach all the vein walls.

During treatment, your provider at Centers for Pain Control and Vein Care uses a local anesthetic to ensure your comfort. If your varicose veins are large or deep under the surface, they also use image guidance to see the veins and guide the injection.

Whether you have sclerotherapy for spider or varicose veins, you can immediately walk around, but you need to wear compression stockings for a time after your treatment. 

If you’re ready to eliminate unsightly veins, call the Centers for Pain Control and Vein Care, or schedule an appointment online today.