Ultrasound Guided Sclerotherapy
What Is Ultrasound Guided Sclerotherapy?
Ultrasound guided sclerotherapy is a treatment that can help reduce the appearance of smaller varicose veins and minimize their symptoms. It is primarily used to treat deep varicose veins that are symptomatic, and that cannot be easily seen or reached at the skin’s surface level. Ultrasound technology is used to “map” out and identify these veins and guide the provider to the correct treatment spot.
After performing the ultrasound, your provider will use a local anesthetic to numb the treatment area. Then, your provider will use ultrasound as a guide to injecting your varicose vein with a medication that irritates and closes the vein. Afterward, the problematic vein will be absorbed by surrounding tissue and gradually disappear. Blood flow will be redirected from that vein to healthier nearby veins.
Ultrasound guided sclerotherapy is relatively safe and produces minimal to no downtime. In some instances, varicose veins may need to be treated more than once before they completely disappear.
Benefits of Ultrasound Guided Sclerotherapy
Ultrasound guided sclerotherapy has many benefits, including:
- Requires minimal procedural time with only minor discomfort
- Requires minimal to no downtime
- Provides help in identifying the root cause of visible varicose and larger spider veins
- Improves the appearance and symptoms of varicose veins
- Is a safe procedure: does not adversely affect blood circulation in any way
Is Ultrasound Guided Sclerotherapy Painful?
Many patients report that ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy is not painful and produces no discomfort. You may experience a minor stinging or burning sensation at the treatment site, which eventually goes away on its own within a few days.
At The Vein Institute of Hunterdon, we provide you with Nitrouseal (also known as nitrous oxide, or laughing gas) to reduce any anxiety and pain you may feel during ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy. Nitrouseal is safe and easy to use, and it effectively reduces pain without the need for opioids. Its effects also wear off rapidly, so you can drive yourself home following your treatment session.
Common side effects of ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy include bruising at the injection site, along with raised, red darkened areas. Larger veins may harden or become lumpy and darken in color. Some veins may not fade or dissolve for up to several months.
Contact your provider right away if you experience side effects other than those listed above.
Following ultrasound guided sclerotherapy, your provider will wrap bandages or medical tape around the treated areas. Compression socks will also need to be worn for at least seven days. For the first few days after treatment, we recommend walking around regularly to promote healthy blood flow and circulation, and avoiding strenuous athletic activity.
Ultrasound guided sclerotherapy produces no downtime—meaning you can resume your usual daily activities after your treatment session. We may recommend coming back for follow-up appointments so we can make sure your treated veins are disappearing and also so we can look for other veins that may need treatment.
Contact The Vein Institute of Hunterdon at (908) 788-0066 to schedule a consultation if you’d like to learn more about ultrasound guided sclerotherapy. We can examine your varicose veins and discuss whether ultrasound guided sclerotherapy is right for you.