Best ways to treat varicose veins
If you’re frustrated by unsightly, painful varicose or spider veins on your legs or another area of your body, you are not alone. In fact, varicose veins affect more than 30% of the population, usually targeting women more than men.
Caused by anything from genetics, pregnancy or simply spending too much time on your feet, varicose veins occur when the tiny valves inside the blood vessels become damaged or stop working. The vein can become swollen and twisted, causing the blood to pool. In some cases, the blood collected in the vein can also escape into smaller capillaries forming spider veins.
Rather than go on ignoring your varicose veins, at Me Clinic, we offer a range of vein treatment options which can remove or dramatically minimise their appearance.
Sclerotherapy is without parallel the gold standard and most effective way to treat leg veins. It can be used to treat large veins or to prevent smaller veins from deteriorating into larger bulging varicose veins.
The treatment works by injecting a sclerosant solution into the affected vein using very small micro-needles, which cause the body to close and contract the vein until it disappears completely.
The procedure can be performed using either liquid or foam sclerosant. Foam sclerotherapy will generally achieve the best result as less solution is required and we can monitor its passage up the offending vein using ultrasound technology. The recovery following the procedure is usually also quicker and causes less discomfort.
You can expect some bruising following the procedure which can usually be treated with Arnica ointment. It’s also common for some veins to turn darker immediately following the procedure before they gradually disappear. You may also notice a brownish stain which should also fade over time. We also recommend that you wear compression stockings for several weeks following treatment to achieve the best result.
The cost of sclerotherapy treatment at ME Clinic starts from $395 for standard treatment or $640 for ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy.
Laser treatments are ideal for treating small facial spider veins. While sclerotherapy is the preferred treatment for leg veins, laser treatments can also be effective at treating small veins on the legs or body if you have light coloured skin and your body hasn’t responded to sclerotherapy.
Laser vein therapy works by emitting light into the affected area, which is absorbed by the blood inside the vein and converted to heat causing the vein to shrink.
Various laser treatments including Aura Laser, Intense Pulsed Light (IPL), Laser Genesis and YAG Laser can each achieve good results - we will advise which type of laser will be most effective depending on your individual condition.
A key benefit of using laser to treat problem veins is the short recovery - while your skin may be a little tender in the days following treatment, the discomfort is generally only very minimal. There is also no need to wear compression stockings following laser treatment.
While the results will vary according to the individual patient and type of laser used, most patients notice a significant improvement in the appearance of treated veins after around 4-6 weeks.
The cost of laser vein treatment at Me Clinic starts from $350.
Endovenous Laser Ablation Treatments (EVLT)
EVLT is another treatment option that is effective at targeting larger veins such as the Greater Saphenous and Small Saphenous veins. EVLT is often also combined with sclerotherapy to target remaining varicose or spider veins.
The treatment works by inserting a fibre-optic probe into the vein and using laser light to generate heat, causing the vein to shrink and close.
A key benefit of using EVLT is the relatively quick recovery period - most patients are up and walking around immediately following treatment (unlike surgical stripping techniques) and usually only experience some mild to moderate pain and tenderness which can be easily managed with pain relief medication.
While most vein treatments are best performed only during the cooler winter months, EVLT can also be performed in the warmer summer months.
The cost of EVLT at Me Clinic stars from $2,500.
Varicose Vein Surgery
While it should only be considered as a last resort, where other less-invasive methods have been unsuccessful at treating your varicose veins, vein surgery may be required.
There are two types of varicose vein surgery: Ambulatory Phlebectomy and traditional vein surgery. Ambulatory Phlebectomy involves the surgical extraction of the offending veins by making only very small incisions, whereas traditional vein surgery can treat larger veins which require ligation (tying off) and potentially stripping and removal.
Ambulatory Phlebectomy is generally the preferred treatment option as it offers a shorter recovery period and is likely to leave less significant scarring than traditional vein surgery. It can also usually be performed in-clinic using local anaesthetic, unlike traditional surgery which is usually performed under general anaesthetic in a hospital.
If you do need to undergo vein surgery, it is common to experience some pain around the site of any incisions, as well as some bruising, soreness and stiffness in the leg that could last several weeks. During this time you’ll also need to wear compression stockings to minimise bruising.
Vein Treatment at Me Clinic
As we approach the cooler months, there is no better time to treat your varicose veins. When you book a vein treatment consultation at Me Clinic, your doctor will provide a personalised assessment of your individual condition and recommend the most suitable treatment option to achieve the best result for you.
All you need to do is contact us to arrange a private consultation with one of our experienced doctors and we’ll have you saying goodbye to those pesky varicose or spider veins before you know it!