Spider Vein Removal
Bryn Mawr, Newtown Square, and Philadelphia Patients Come to Cirillo Cosmetic for Sclerotherapy with Asclera®
Do you hide your legs because of unsightly spider veins (clusters of red, blue, or purple veins) on the thighs, calves, or ankles? You're not alone. It is estimated that more than half of all women have this common cosmetic problem. We have an effective solution for spider vein removal for Bryn Mawr, Newtown Square, and Philadelphia residents.
Visit our before & after photo gallery to see other patients who have taken the steps to healthier, clearer skin.
What Are Spider Veins?
Spider veins are clusters of small, thin, red, blue, and/or purple veins (up to 1 mm in diameter) that lie close to the surface of the skin. They may resemble tree branches or intricate spider webs. They are typically found on the legs and occasionally on the face.
The visible veins typically do not cause pain or pose a health threat, but many people find them embarrassing and have spider vein removal for cosmetic reasons.
What Causes Spider Veins?
Patients who seek spider vein removal often have a medical condition known as venous insufficiency. This causes tiny, one-way valves in the veins to stop working properly and become stretched as blood begins to pool because it can't circulate properly. At this point, spider veins appear.
There are various factors that can make you more susceptible to this problem. Spider vein removal is most commonly performed on women, as hormonal fluctuations, the effects of birth control pills, and pregnancy can increase the likelihood of visible veins developing. Obesity, genetics, sun damage, extreme heat, excessive alcohol consumption, and a sedentary lifestyle can also increase your risk of developing spider veins.
Preventing Spider Veins
There is no guaranteed spider vein prevention strategy, but patients can make long-term lifestyle changes to stop new visible veins from forming or to reduce the severity of the ones they already have. Regular exercise is important. Patients should also avoid sitting or standing in the same position for lengthy periods.
Protect your skin from UV rays by regularly applying a broad-spectrum sunscreen, covering up with clothing, and staying out of the sun during peak hours. Avoid tight, restrictive clothing around the waist and lower body. It's also important to maintain a healthy weight to avoid placing extra pressure on the legs.
What is Sclerotherapy and How Does It Help with Spider Vein Removal?
Sclerotherapy is a minimally invasive "gold standard" treatment for uncomplicated reticular veins (the green and blue feeder veins just under the surface of the skin) and spider veins. Laser therapy can also be used to treat reticular and spider veins. We may combine sclerotherapy and laser therapy to obtain the best results.
Sclerotherapy involves injecting small doses of a sclerosing solution directly into the unwanted vein with a very fine needle. The injection "flushes" out the red blood cells temporarily, leading to an inflammatory reaction. This reaction causes "sclerosis," or the formation of fibrous tissue within the vessel, leading to the gradual disappearance of the vessel.
This fading can take from a few weeks to a few months. In each spider vein removal session, multiple areas can be treated, thus reducing the total number of sessions required. The total number of treatments needed depends on the amount and severity of the veins (the average is three to five), with severe cases requiring more.
More than 90 percent of spider vein removal patients see improvement with sclerotherapy. It is extremely rare for anyone's condition to worsen because of treatment. Sclerotherapy is not recommended for patients with a known allergy to Polidocanol (Asclera®), a clotting disorder, or for patients who are pregnant or nursing.
Once a spider vein removal session is complete, patients can continue to go about their regular activities. You will receive detailed post-care instructions. We recommend the judicious use of sunscreen, avoiding strenuous exercise for 24 hours after therapy, and wearing compression stockings of 15 to 20 mm Hg during waking hours for three to seven days after spider vein treatment.
When used after sclerotherapy or laser therapy, compression serves several important functions:
- Decreases the risk of the vessel opening up
- Decreases the incidence of post-treatment pigmentation
- Minimizes the formation of telangiectatic matting (development of groups of fine red blood vessels near the sites of injection of larger vessels, especially on the thighs and ankles)
- Improves calf-muscle pump and decreases pooling of blood
- Promotes sealing and faster resolution of treated veins
Beyond Spider Vein Removal: Other Injectable Cosmetic Treatments
Many patients who visit us for spider vein removal also choose to receive other cosmetic treatments to reduce wrinkles, lines, and folds, or to reduce fat under the chin.
Cirillo Cosmetic's team of board-certified dermatologists offer expertise in a range of other injectable treatments, such as BOTOX® and dermal fillers to treat lines and wrinkles, and Kybella® to reduce chin fat.