Spider veins and varicose veins are a nuisance for many sufferers of these conditions in Elgin, Illinois and in other parts of the country. Not only do they lead to embarrassment due to their unsightly, aesthetically-unappealing appearance, those suffering from varicose veins may experience pain and heaviness in the legs, making this quite the troubling venous condition. Patients who are suffering from these conditions often seek treatment in the form of minimally-invasive procedures to find relief. Foam sclerotherapy is a procedure that uses injections of a chemical sclerant to treat spider veins and smaller varicose veins. Those with larger varicose veins may be encouraged to seek other forms of treatment.
Foam sclerotherapy works by injecting a chemical sclerant into the problem vein to irritate the vessel lining. This causes the vein to collapse, shrink and eventually disappear entirely. A topical anesthetic is first applied to ensure patient comfort throughout the procedure. There may be more than one injection of the sclerant required depending on the size of the treatment area, and most procedure take between 30 and 45 minutes to perform, although this may vary. With the vessel hardened and constricted, blood no longer flows through these veins and other veins in the area will handle blood flow.
Before undergoing treatment, it is important that individuals interested in this type of treatment speak with a vein specialist in the Elgin area to determine if the procedure is right for them. Most men and women who are suffering from spider veins or small varicose veins may be considered candidates for this procedure, although those with certain blood or cardiovascular problems and women who are pregnant may not be considered candidates.
After the treatment, most individuals are able to return to work or normal daily routines immediately following the procedure. If veins in the legs are treated using foam sclerotherapy, compression stockings may be worn for a couple of days to aid in the healing process. Results are usually obtained after just one treatment, although some may require subsequent treatments to reach optimal results. This is another item to discuss with a vein specialist prior to treatment.
As with most medical procedures, there are certain risks and complications associated with foam sclerotherapy. There may be a higher risk of microembolisms associated with this procedure, which are tiny blood clots that may form in the treatment area. Other possible complications may include itching, redness and bruising, although these should resolve within a day or two after the procedure.
To answer the question posed in the title, foam sclerotherapy differs from other sclerotherapy in the consistency of the sclerant used in the injections. Sclerotherapy traditionally used a liquid formulation, while foam sclerotherapy uses a foam formulation similar in consistency to shaving cream. There are a few distinct advantages of the foam formulation compared to the liquid formation. For one, the foam formulation is easier to view and track using ultrasound. The foam formulation is also more effective in displacing blood in the vessel, allowing for greater contact with the vessel lining. Before choosing a treatment, it is important to discuss and explore one's options with a trained vein specialist in the Elgin area.
Regarding cost, insurance may cover the treatment in cases in which larger veins are involved. In most cases, however, foam sclerotherapy is considered a cosmetic procedure and is not covered by insurance. It is important to discuss this with a vein specialist and one's insurance company to determine if the procedure will be covered. The cost per session may range from $200 to $500 per session depending on the treatment area.
Learn more about foam sclerotherapy in Elgin, Illinois.
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