Spider veins are the small, thread-like colored veins that are seen on the surface of the skin, most commonly on the thighs or lower legs of women. They are hereditary and can form anywhere on the leg, from the top of the thigh to the ankle.
Although spider veins carry blood, they are not part of the venous valve system and can be removed permanently through a simple office procedure known as Sclerotherapy.
Sclerotherapy is an office-based procedure used to eliminate small varicose veins and spider veins. During treatment a mild solution is injected directly into the vein, with usually no anesthesia required. Patients may need one to several sclerotherapy sessions for any region of the leg, and a number of injections per session.
A tiny needle, about the size of a hair is used to irritate the lining of the vein. Over a short period of time the vein closes and is reabsorbed. The blood previously going through the treated vein will get rerouted through other healthy veins.
After Sclerotherapy, patients report less pain from their veins and that their legs are generally more comfortable. Eventually the vein will become scar tissue and disappear. Side effects may include swelling, itching, and skin color changes in the treated area. You’ll be asked to wear compression stockings, usually for about three weeks, to maintain compression of the treated veins.