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How long does it take for the body to absorb veins treated with sclerotherapy?

I have always had thin skin but as I've gotten older (and probably due to sun exposure) it has gone from translucent to literally transparent. Dozens of reticular veins are visible. I have had two sclerotherapy sessions on just my calves in the past month and there has been little improvement. Am I being impatient or did it just not work? I am expecting it to cost me 3k to treat all my leg veins, but if it isn't going to work I'd rather not throw my money away.

Doctor Answers (3)

Sclerotherapy in Buffalo Niagara

+1
Sclerotherapy is best done with foam sclerotherapy and the success is very good. Thin skin or not, the injected or sclerosed veins obliterate and it can take 3-4 months for the healing process to complete - meaning that the obliterated veins will heal and pigmentation fade away. 

The technique is very important so watch the video link I provided below on my website.

As well, if the veins 'blush' when you push on them, it means that sclerotherapy was not successful and the veins did not get adequate dose/concentration/amount of sclerosant solution through them. You may need additional sessions and also an evaluation for venous insufficiency - truncal (saphenofemoral or saphenopoliteal) or axial (perforator vein reflux). 

Read about perforator vein reflux on my website. These feeder veins originating from perforator veins in the muscles of the legs can contribute to lack of efficacy of some sclerotherapy. It is therefore very important to have someone with qualification and understanding of venous disease - Board Certification from the American Board of Venous and Lymphatic Medicine.


Buffalo General Surgeon
4.5 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

Should have full venous evaluation.

+1
Sclerotherapy is a process and usually 3 to 5 treatments spaced at intervals of anywhere from 6 weeks to 3 months apart are necessary.  Some veins may clear within one treatment and some will require multiple sessions.  If you have had no significant improvement in your veins following 2 sclerotherapy sessions then you may have an underlying problem with refluxing valves in the saphenous system of veins especially if you have many reticular vein and any varicose veins.  A venous reflux ultrasound would be helpful to elucidate the status of the valves and help to determine definitive treatment .

John Landi, MD
Naples General Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Sclerotherapy works well if performed properly. Veins usually fade away in 1 to 3 months depending on the size and location.

+1
Most small spider and reticular veins will fade away within 1 to 3 months after an effective treatment.  Larger varicose veins, will require a longer time to complete fading and require longer use of compression stocking and possibly the lancing and evacuation of coagulated blood trapped in the veins.  

A doctor with extensive experience in sclerotherapy can examine your particular veins and estimate how they will respond.  Larger incompetent veins such as the saphenous vein may do better with endovenous laser ablation or radiofrequency closure. 

Mark Taylor, MD
Salt Lake City Dermatologic Surgeon
4.0 out of 5 stars 10 reviews

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These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.