If you've made an appointment to have some of your varicose veins treated with sclerotherapy, you may be a bit nervous about the upcoming procedure. After all, having veins removed from your legs is not an everyday occurrence! Here's a look at what you can expect during and after the procedure.
When you arrive at the doctor's office
Sclerotherapy is usually conducted in an outpatient surgical center or your plastic surgeon's office. You should not have to stay overnight in a hospital.
When you arrive at the office, a nurse will take your blood pressure and may give you a basic examination to make sure you're healthy enough to undergo the procedure. The skin in the area to be treated may be washed with a special soap or cleansed with disinfecting wipes.
When the doctor comes in
Once you've been examined and prepped, your doctor will begin by applying a topical anesthetic to your legs. Usually, a numbing gel, similar to the gel you'd put on the gums of a teething baby, is used. This will take a minute to kick in, and then your doctor will begin the injections.
A specialized salt solution is injected into the vein to be treated. You may feel some slight pinching and burning, but the process should not be overly painful and these symptoms should only last a minute or two. An injection will be made into each vein that's being removed.
Once the injections are complete, your doctor will observe you for a few minutes to ensure you're not developing any allergic reactions to the treatment solution. Then, you'll be free to return home. While you can drive yourself home (since you won't be given any anesthesia), it's usually best to have a friend do this since your legs might be a little sore.
After the procedure
Most patients have some aching and itching in their legs for a few days after sclerotherapy. Taking an over-the-counter pain reliever should keep you comfortable. You might notice a little bruising and swelling around the injection sites, but this too should fade within a week. In the weeks that follow the procedure, your varicose veins will become less and less apparent as your body absorbs them. Side effects are rare, but you should contact your doctor if you notice:
Sclerotherapy sounds intimidating, but it's actually a very common and safe procedure when performed by a experienced doctor. For more information, contact local professionals like The Sheen Vein Institute.Share
11 November 2016
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