Spider Vein Treatment in Oakmont, PA
Vein Specialists of Pittsburgh Is Here to Help With the Visibility of Your Spider Veins. Our Expert Doctor Dr. Valerie Drnovsek Is Proud to Specialize in This Area of Treatment. Book an Appointment or Dial (412) 312-4666 to Learn More About Our Affordable Spider Vein Treatment near You.
Spider veins are red, blue, purple, or pinkish lines which can be seen on the outer part of the skin in a spider-leg arrangement. The actual structure you are seeing is a vessel called capillaries or small veins (venules) which have become larger than structurally designed and become apparent on the skin.
Quick Video Showing How Spider Vein Treatment Works
Treatment for Spider Veins Sclerotherapy
Check out this short video showing how quickly spider veins are treated. There is nothing like seeing it in action!
Symptoms of Spider Veins
Spider veins are often accompanied with swelling, throbbing, burning, a cramping feeling and leg fatigue. Patients can have more or less of these symptoms despite visible appearance of spider veins.
Even without the associated symptoms, many choose to still treat spider veins
If you seek treatment to rid yourself of symptoms then this is known as therapeutic treatment. Spider vein treatment can greatly mitigate these symptoms:
- Heavy, achy feeling in the legs.
- Burning, throbbing, muscle cramping
- Swelling in your lower legs
- Itching around or near your spider veins
It is also common to have treatment done with no symptoms to improve appearance only, or cosmetic treatment.
Causes of Spider Veins
Causes of Spider Veins
Your arteries pump blood away from the heart at a relatively high pressure. Veins on the other hand return blood to the heart at a lower pressure and must do their job against the force of gravity. That’s why it can feel so good to put your feet up at the end of the day. To help the correct flow of blood back to the heart the veins have valves, flaps of tissue in the vessel that allow the blood to move only one direction. Over time and with certain other factors these valves can become damaged.
This lower pressure, gravity, history of long periods of standing (typically seen in certain occupations), damaged valves, along with genetic pre-disposition all contribute to the improper reverse flow of your blood. This is known as venous insufficiency. The reverse flow, or reflux, directly causes more blood to be in the vessel. This increased amount of blood further increases pressure and makes the vein larger over time.
Who Gets Spider Veins?
Causes of Spider Veins Spider Vein Risk Factors
Spider veins are very common, but particularly in women. Men have this condition as well, especially if they have a history of trauma from kicking sports. Although on average due to women’s hormones they are at a higher likelihood for this condition. So aside from gender, there are risk factors.
Spider Veins and Risk Factors
Aging cause wear and tear on the circulatory system. When the valves in your circulatory system aren’t working perfectly, blood can flow back into the veins where it can collect instead of flowing up to the heart.
Spider Veins and Pregnancy
Pregnancy adds stress to the body and increases the total amount of blood in the body. Changes in circulation associated with pregnancy can enlarge veins in the legs. This can become more of an issue later in the pregnancy. Hormone changes during pregnancy also play a role. The good news is that symptoms associated with pregnancy can improve over time without medical treatment.
Spider veins are more prevalent in women than in men. As mentioned above, hormonal changes during pregnancy is one cause. Also premenstruation or menopause can be factors. Taking hormone replacement therapy or birth control pills may also increase a woman’s risk for developing spider veins.
Spider veins are often associated with being overweight for the simple reason that being overweight puts added pressure on your veins.
STANDING / SITTING FOR LONG PERIODS OF TIME
This can often be an issue associated with you specific job. Your blood doesn’t flow as well when you’re in the same position for a long period of time. Every notice how uncomfortable you feel on a long flight for example?
GENETICS – SPIDER VEINS AND FAMILY HISTORY
If others in your family have spider veins, there is a higher likelyhood that you will too.
Can Spider Veins be a Sign of Something Else?
Treatment for Spider Veins Symptoms
Visible spider veins may just be the first sign of a deeper problem. Often spider veins can be a sign of venous insufficiency and reflux in the larger veins towards the surface of the skin known as superficial veins or perforators (veins that connect the superficial veins to the deep veins).
Varicose veins are often symptomatic and, when they are bulging, a rope like appearance can be noted.
Symptoms include: swelling, redness, aching, heaviness, inability to exercise, pain or tenderness along the vein, itching, burning, restless legs, changes in skin, and decreased sensation of touch.
If you have concerns it is always best to consult with your physician.
What If I Don’t Get My Spider Veins Treated?
Symptoms Treatment for Spider Veins
What if I don’t get my Spider Veins Treated?
The short answer is it depends on the cause of the Spider Veins, if they are a manifestation of underlying venous insufficiency, if you have symptoms, or if they are hormonal or hereditary in origin.
Inadequate blood flow may lead to chronic skin changes manifesting as thickening, hardening and discoloration of the skin. Moreover, very visible and tortuous varicose veins and other listed symptoms can result from lack of treatment (see symptoms above).
The symptoms of vein disease evolve over time and often patients are surprised by how much better they feel after treatment.
Spider Vein Consultations
Treatment for Spider Veins Sclerotherapy
Vein Specialists of Pittsburgh offers consultation for patients with spider veins and/or varicose veins.
A brief ultrasound screening is frequently performed at the time of first consultation.
An Ultrasound and Doppler interrogation is non-invasive and by definition painless.
A treatment plan is tailored to each individual patient based on unique pathophysiology and anatomy of their venous system.
is the most common treatment for spider veins. This is the gold standard of care for this condition. In some cases, advanced ultrasound is used to visualize deeper veins hidden from unaided sight. Ultrasound guided sclerotherapy or visual sclerotherapy can be used in conjunction with other treatments such as Endovenous Laser Ablation (EVLA), Ambulatory Phlebectomy, or VenaSeal when the condition is associated with venous reflux.
What Exactly is Sclerotherapy?
Sclerotherapy entails injection of solution into the diseased veins causing the blood in the vein to clot and the vein to shut down.
The healing process leads to the disappearance of unsightly veins over several weeks. Immediately following sclerotherapy, the veins will look worse before they appear better.
Does Sclerotherapy Hurt?
As injection of sclerosing agent entails multiple needle sticks with a very small needle, mild discomfort and/ or burning sensation is possible. Injections are generally well tolerated.
Injections are generally well tolerated. If patients wish they may take Advil, Tylenol or Ibuprofen after the treatment.
Does Sclerotherapy Involve Side Effects?
Common side effects include bruising, redness, swelling or itching at the injection site.
These are minor and short lived effects.
Major complications are rare. You may return to your normal activity level immediately after treatment.
Other Common Questions Regarding Sclerotherapy
Having question about sclerotherapy is natural. How long does it take? How many treatments are needed? How soon can I resume work and exercise? How long is complete recovery?
How long does Sclerotherapy take on average?
You may expect the procedure to take from 30-45 mins. This is dependent on the extent of diseased veins and varies from patient to patient.
How many Treatments are needed?
Anywhere from 1-8 treatments are used for patients. Most patients see good improvement with 4-6 sessions. These sessions are usually done 4-6 weeks apart. To decrease healing time and bruising compression stockings are generally worn for 5 days after each treatment.
How soon can I go back to work and exercise?
Apart from wearing compression stockings during waking hours for at least five days; you can return to your normal activity immediately. Exercise can be resumed the next day.
How long does it take to see the full effects of the treatment?
At first you may have some bruising which will resolve over time. Redness, swelling and or some discomfort is only temporary.
Over a period of 4-6 months significant improvement is generally noticable.