Who Should Perform Sclerotherapy - Dermatologist, Plastic Surgeon, Vein Clinic?

Who is the best choice for sclerotherapy or any other type of vein removal...one of the "Vein Clinics", a dermatologist, or plastic surgeon?

Doctor Answers (11)

Sclerotherapy / Treatment of (Leg) Veins - Who Should Perform This?


Although sclerotherapy can be performed by any type of physician, I highly recommend that you choose someone who has been specifically trained to do this procedure (i.e. a dermatologist or vascular surgeon).

Anyone considering sclerotherapy for the treatment of unsightly leg veins should first be evaluated/screened for possible underlying problems with the valve of the large vein on either side of his/her groin (the greater saphenous vein). Blood from the majority of the leg veins that you are able to see ultimately drains into this vein prior to returning to the heart. If this vein has an "incompetent" (poorly functioning) valve and the problem is not corrected (thorough a procedure such as endovenous laser ablation), sclerotherapy will provide only temporary - if any - improvement in the appearance of leg veins.

Only a small percentage of patients who have spider veins, varicose veins, etc. have problems with the valve of one of their greater saphenous veins (which results in reflux/back-flow of the blood back into the leg veins). However, your best bet is to find a physician who is not only good at performing sclerotherapy, but is also able to screen for possible underlying dysfunction of your greater saphenous veins.

Take care and good luck!

Beverly Hills Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

Dermatologist or vascular surgeon


The best experts for sclerotherapy are a dermatologist or a vascular surgeon.  Also be sure to check on their level of experience.

Brian Dubow, MD
Los Angeles Dermatologic Surgeon

Sclerotherapy qualifications


Dermatologists and vascular surgeons are usually considered the experts in sclerotherapy.  There are many factors that determine which would be best suited to handle a particular case, like size of vessels, depth of vessels, association with pain, level of experience and the methods that are used to treat the veins.

Corey L. Hartman, MD
Birmingham Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 4 reviews

You might also like...

Vein sclerotherapy

Experience knowledge and technique are very important as well as boaed certification. An understanding of anatomy, knowing when to do ultrasound tests ans which liquid or foam to injecy or laser to use is also important. Dermatologists vascular surgeons and plastic surgeons do most of these treatments.

Ronald Shelton, MD
Manhattan Dermatologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 31 reviews

Sclerotherapy can be performed by any MD.


Sclerotherapy can be performed by any Doc but usually it is a dermatologist or vascular surgeon.  Cost runs about $350-450 per session and almost always requires 2-3 sessions 4-6 weeks apart.  Sincerely,

David Hansen,MD

David Hansen, MD
Beverly Hills Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 24 reviews

A physician


If the vein clinic has an experienced, licensed MD, I have no problem with them performing the injections. Dermatologists, plastic surgeons, and vascular surgeons are also qualified and do an excellent job.

Mary Lupo, MD
New Orleans Dermatologist
5.0 out of 5 stars 8 reviews

Overlap of treatment.


There are many physicians qualified to treat veins including plastic surgeon, dermatologists, general surgeons, vascular surgeons and vein specialists. The speciality of venous diseases is called Phlebology and those vein specialists who have passed the vein boards are called Diplomates of the American Board of Venous and Lymphatic Medicine. This separate vein speciality originated in 2008 and now has close to 1000 members. So to answer your question, there is an overlap of vein treatment between specialities but there are also dedicated vein specialists who treat venous diseases exclusively. If you want someone whose entire practice is vein treatment, then see a vein specialist, but there are many other qualified specialists who can treat veins.

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

Sclerotherapy - Which Doctor To Choose to Do Vein Injections of Legs


I advise that you seek out someone who is board certified in performing vein treatments / procedures.  Usually for spider veins, this would be a vascular surgeon or dermatologist who runs a vein clinic or vein center.  For varicose veins, you are best served by seeing a vascular surgeons, as often there is a deeper problem in the leg that needs to be addressed before the sclerotherapy injections are done.  Board certified vascular surgeons receive formal medical and surgical training in treating these deeper vein problems with catheter treatments (such as EVLT laser or Venefit Radiofrequency Closure) and can also offer you the appropriate surgery or operation if that is necessary.  These treatment cure the underlying cause, known as venous reflux disease.

The majority of vein clinics, dermatologist, and plastic surgeons cannot offer you the complete effective treatment for varicose veins, but the vascular surgeons can offer you everything that you might need.


With spider veins, there is no underlying circulation problem in the majority of patients, so it would be fine for either a board certified dermatologist or a board certified vascular surgeons to do your treatments.  Avoid "spas" that offers vein treatments without a board certified vein MD present.


I hope this information was useful to you.

Joel Gotvald, MD, FACS
Austin General Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 1 review

Choosing a board certified vein surgeon who is a member of the American College of Phlebology and Board


I would recommend a physician who is a diplomate of the American Board of Phlebology (Vein Surgery).


These physicians are specialists in vein procedures and have special expertise in the field. 

Raffy Karamanoukian, MD, FACS
Los Angeles Plastic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 47 reviews

What doctor is most qualified to perform sclerotherapy


Sclerotherapy is part of the core curriculum for Dermatologists, and therefore most are trained and tested on their board exams regarding the treatment. I cannot comment on whether the same holds true for plastic surgeons and the doctors of a “vein clinic” as any doctor can run a vein clinic. Therefore, you may consider asking what their credentials are. Some are run by vascular surgeons who specialize in veins, and this may serve as a good alternative. Good luck.

Sabrina Fabi, MD
San Diego Dermatologic Surgeon
5.0 out of 5 stars 31 reviews

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.