Discover different varicose veins treatments
There are several types of varicose veins and spider veins that a person may experience on both the body and the face. At Me Clinic, we tailor the treatment to suit your specific situation. Treatment of varicose veins and associated vein problems can include ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy (foam sclerotherapy), endovenous laser ablation (radiofrequency ablation), varicose vein surgery, self-care measures, compression stockings, and other treatment options.
All varicose vein treatments are performed as an outpatient procedure where you can return home the same day. Read on to find out more about a treatment that will be suitable for you.
This includes simple activities that almost anyone can perform, such as exercise, raising the legs while sitting or lying down, and wearing compression stockings. These practices can dramatically ease varicose vein pain and also prevent varicose veins from getting worse. Wearing compression stockings will squeeze the legs, allowing veins and muscles to circulate blood more efficiently.
Surgeries and other procedures
If varicose veins are more troubling or severe, surgery or other procedures may be recommended. These include:
Sclerotherapy: A sclerosant foam solution is injected into varicose veins causing them to scar and close. The vein will fade within a few weeks. This procedure can be performed in-house at a Me Clinic.
Laser treatment: A strong burst of light energy is targeted into the vein. The vein will slowly fade and disappear. There are no needles or incisions required.
Catheter radiofrequency or laser energy treatment: This is generally preferred for large varicose veins such as the great saphenous vein. A thin tube (catheter) is inserted into the vein which is then heated using radiofrequency or laser energy. The heated vein collapses and seals shut.
High ligation and vein stripping: The vein is tied off and removed through small cuts. Blood flow isn’t impeded as blood continues to flow through larger veins deeper in the leg.
Ambulatory Phlebectomy: Smaller varicose veins are removed through tiny skin punctures. The area of the leg being pricked is numbed during the procedure, with minimal resultant scarring.
VenaSeal: A medical-grade glue is positioned in the varicose vein using a small catheter. The vein wall is sealed together almost instantly.
More about sclerotherapy
Sclerotherapy is a very effective method of treating varicose veins and spider veins. Your Me Clinic specialist will advise you if this is the preferred treatment option for you. Sclerotherapy involves injecting a solution into the vein, causing the vein to scar and forcing blood to reroute through your healthier veins. The collapsed vein will reabsorb into your skin tissue and fade over time. It generally takes between a couple of weeks to a month or more to see the full results. In some cases, follow-up sclerotherapy treatment sessions will be required to achieve the best possible outcomes.
Common causes of varicose veins
Although varicose veins can happen to anyone, there are certain factors that increase the possibility of experiencing them. Your chances of getting varicose veins are increased if any of the following apply to you:
Family History: If your parents had varicose veins, you are more likely to develop them yourself.
Age: As a person ages, the valves in the veins may not work as efficiently as they once did.
Gender: Women are more prone to experience varicose veins due to hormonal changes.
Being overweight: Extra weight will exert additional pressure on a person’s veins.
Standing or sitting for long periods: Your veins will be forced to work harder, increasing your risk.
Previous blood clots: Phlebitis, deep vein thrombosis, and blood clots can cause varicose veins.
Symptoms of varicose veins
Varicose veins don’t always cause pain, although they are often unsightly and unwanted. Signs and symptoms of varicose veins include:
- Veins that show a dark purple or blue colour
- Veins that become twisted or bulging
- An ongoing achy or heavy feeling in the legs
- Sensations such as burning, throbbing, or cramping
- Swelling in the lower legs
- Pain experienced after long periods of sitting or standing
- Itchiness around the veins
Do you suffer from Spider veins?
Spider veins are somewhat similar to varicose veins, although smaller. Spider veins are often red or blueish in colour and are found closer to the skin’s surface. They can appear on the face as well as the legs and can vary in size. Spider veins can look a bit like a spider’s web.
Prevention of varicose veins
There are some simple steps you can take to improve blood flow in your legs to prevent varicose veins or stop them from getting worse. These include:
- regular exercise
- losing weight
- avoid prolonged sitting or standing
- avoid tight-fitting clothes
- put your feet up when you can
- wear supportive compression stockings or pantyhose
What to expect after having Sclerotherapy treatment
Varicose vein treatments are day procedures and you will be able to walk around soon after the procedure. You may need to wear compression stockings for around two weeks after the surgery to keep pressure on the treated veins. You should be able to return to most normal activities on the same day, but it’s advisable to have someone drive you home after the procedure. You should avoid strenuous exercise for a couple of weeks and avoid sun exposure during this time.
Find out what can be done about varicose leg veins
The helpful and professional experts at Me Clinic are on hand to assist with more information about varicose veins, including before and after photos and success stories from real patients. You can use the handy online assessment form to book your consultation with one of our experienced doctors.