Spider veins are a major reason why individuals go to cosmetic surgeons. In North America, estimates indicate that close to 50 million women have some degree of spider veins. However, in all cases of spider veins the main reason for the visit to the physician is cosmesis. These very superficial skin lesions not only appear on the leg but may also occur on the face. Spider veins appear like a "radiant star" with a lattice network. They may vary in size (1-3mm) and also in color (blue to reddish). Despite what many believe, spider veins are completely harmless and not associated with any symptoms.
There are numerous cosmetic physicians and surgeons in Georgia who deal with spider veins. The majority of cosmetic clinics offer both sclerotherapy and laser therapy as treatment options for spider veins.
Are there any creams to remove spider veins?
No, there are no creams to remove spider veins. However, Camouflage creams are available but this is only a temporary solution. Spider veins unfortunately do not resolve on their own and there is no permanent cure for them.
What are treatment options for spider veins in Georgia?
Most cosmetic physicians in Georgia offer the following treatments for spider veins:
- Injection sclerotherapy
- Intense pulse light therapy
How do lasers work?
Laser is one of the most common tools use by physicians in Georgia to treat spider veins all over the body. There are numerous types of lasers used to treat spider veins. The laser works by generating a beam of light which produces heat energy. The heat destroys the spider veins.
What are advantages of the laser?
The laser is a fast procedure, not very painful, produces excellent results and most individuals can return to work within 24-48 hours.
How many laser sessions does one require to treat spider veins?
At least 2-3 laser sessions are recommended by most cosmetic physicians in Georgia. The laser sessions are usually spread 3-6 weeks apart.
What is sclerotherapy?
Sclerotherapy is a much older technique of treating spider veins. Most cosmetic physicians and surgeons in Georgia are familiar with this technique. The technique involves injections of a chemical into each spider vein. Each injection is done with a very fine needle taking great care not to infiltrate the surrounding tissues. The procedure usually requires multiple injections. Compared to laser, the treatment times are much longer and are associated with a little more pain. In addition, bruising and darkening of the skin is common after the procedure.
How long does sclerotherapy take?
Because most individuals have multiple spider veins, the procedure may take anywhere from 45-60 minutes. After the injection, a compression garment will be wrapped around the legs. Unlike the laser, most individuals need at least 2-3 days to recover from the procedure. Most physicians in Georgia recommend 1-3 sessions for the full benefit of sclerotherapy. The final cosmetic results are not seen for a few months after the injections.
Are there any side effects of sclerotherapy?
Yes. The few side effects include burning at the site of injection and bruising. If the chemical is accidentally injected into the surrounding tissues, a darkened discoloration of the skin will occur-which is more unsightly than the spider vein.
Can spider veins be treated at a spa?
There are numerous spas and clinics all over Georgia which deal with spider veins. However, the majority of these clinics are not staffed by physicians. To get the best treatment with the least number of complications, it is advisable to seek a board certified dermatologist or cosmetic surgeon who has experience with spider veins.
Can spider veins recur?
Yes, when not properly treated spider veins can occur. However, in most cases it is the newer spider veins occurring at different sites in the leg.
What is the best treatment of spider veins during pregnancy?
Neither laser not sclerotherapy is recommended during pregnancy. The best time to treat your spider veins is 3-4 months after delivery.
Who should not undergo spider vein treatment?
There are no absolute reasons as to why someone can't undergo treatment for spider veins. However, pregnant females and those with poorly controlled diabetes, skin infections, those taking blood thinners or steroids should see a physician before embarking on treatment.
How can I prevent spider veins?
Spider veins can be prevented by following a few basic rules:
- One should avoid sitting in one place for prolonged periods
- One should avoid standing for long periods
- Compression stockings should be worn if one is predisposed to spider veins
- Always remain active and exercise regularly
- One should avoid being overweight
Does insurance cover spider vein treatments?
Most insurance carriers and Medicare do not cover the cost of spider vein treatments. The average cost of treating spider veins in Georgia ranges from
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