Lets talk about Spider Veins and Sclerotherapy with Amy
Sclerotherapy has been around for 20 to 30 years, I would say. Over the last 5 to 10 years it's really come a long way in a sense that we have FDA approval for the actual medication that we're injecting into the spider veins. We use a product called Asclera. Asclera is one of two that's FDA-approved to inject into those spider veins. It's a polidocanol solution, so basically what it's doing is it's getting in that vein lining and it's irritating the vein lining and fading it away over time. They describe it kind of like a vein detergent. It's going in there and just kind of rubbing the walls of the veins and fading it away. With that said, it still does take multiple treatments. There is nothing that has FDA approval that it's a one and done treatment. After sclerotherapy the vein is actually gone. A lot of the times these veins have a deeper connection to them. One thing that we always make sure that we do with all of our patients is make sure there's no underlying disease involved. Dr. Mountcastle performs several varicose vein procedures a year. What we're looking for is making sure that everything deep in their veins has good flow before we just go injecting the superficial cosmetic spider veins. A normal treatment, if somebody were to come in and present with spider veins we would just do a quick ultrasound on them just to make sure everything looks good deep in their system. If we did find something we always do recommend that you do your varicose vein treatments first. While varicose vein treatments and spider vein treatments are not directly correlated, we often times do see a lot of people with deep problems also have that superficial sclerotherapy needed. The cost for sclerotherapy is priced per session. Normally we price the session at a 30-minute session. It can range from $300 to $400 depending on how much solution is used, if a little bit of extra time is needed. The great thing about sclerotherapy is that as you continue the treatment on the price does reduce significantly. Once you become more of an established patient into our system, we have nice touch-up sessions too. As I kind of mentioned earlier, sclerotherapy is maintenancing. Even after that 3 to 5 sessions it is recommended that you keep up on it. You do one or two every year or so just to make sure you don't get right back to where you started. It's much easier to maintenance them once or twice a year than to come back in and do a whole nother series of three to five of them. Sclerotherapy has some risk involved with it. I would say one of the more common risks is something called staining. Staining can come if adequate compression is not applied after the procedure. That's why it is so important that you wear your compression stockings for five days after each treatment. The staining is not permanent, which is a positive but it can last for six to eight months or so. The staining just presents like a little bruise. Any other risks involved are your normal risks. You're looking at probable bruising, a little bit of swelling, a little bit of discomfort but overall it is a very safe, minimally invasive procedure.