Vein Institute of NJ - Helpful Articles

Potential Downsides of Sclerotherapy

Modern sclerotherapy techniques are highly effective in reducing or eliminating unsightly varicose veins, reticular veins and spider veins. However, any therapy presents potential drawbacks or risks to some patients.

Here at the Vein Institute of New Jersey with 7 convenient locations, in Clifton, Livingston, Morristown, Princeton, Rockaway, Shrewsbury and Westfield, we believe patients should be aware of all the potential consequences of their health care choices, so they can make informed decisions. As a professional, top-rated medical practice since 1963, we believe in information transparency, education, and integrity and want to share the upsides as well as downsides to your varicose vein treatment.

In a previous blog post we talked about the benefits of sclerotherapy treatments, so now let’s address the potential downsides. These aren’t necessarily risks, but things to be prepared for. Here are the Top Ten downsides of sclerotherapy treatments, in random order:

  1. While most patients only require one sclerotherapy treatment to reduce or eliminate problem veins, some may need more. Some veins are just stubborn and need to be reinjected before they disappear.
  2. Most patients report feeling little discomfort as a sclerotherapy side effect - the most common complaint is some mild itching on the evening of the injections.
  3. Some patients experience a slight to moderate burning sensation immediately after the sclerotherapy injection—this is rare and almost always relieved by an over-the-counter pain reliever.
  4. You must wear compression stockings or compression bandages for a short while post sclerotherapy, in order to achieve the best result. Almost no one complains about the injections…several people complain about the stockings!
  5. You may engage in vigorous physical activity immediately but you will need to wear the stockings!
  6. You will be encouraged to walk immediately after the procedure, which some sedentary patients may consider demanding.
  7. Allergic reactions to the chemical used in the procedures can occur in rare instances.
  8. Bruising around the treatment area and clots at the injection site occasionally develop, which usually resolve without treatment.
  9. A slight blistering of the surrounding tissue has been reported.
  10. A small percentage of sclerotherapy patients develop a network of tiny pink vessels called “matte telangiectasias” which usually resolves without treatment.

The clinical reality is that the overwhelming majority of sclerotherapy patients have very positive outcomes. However, patients should be aware of all facets of their treatment’s potential outcomes.

To learn more and find out what treatment is best for your health, schedule an appointment with us today.

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