When small veins are damaged, they can become more prominently visible on the surface of the skin. They’re most likely to pop up on your legs and arms. There are several causes behind spider veins, also known as telangiectasia. At Reno Sparks MedSpa in Reno, NV, we offer several different treatments to help reduce the appearance of telangiectasia.
What Is the Best Way to Treat Spider Veins?
A simple laser treatment is one of the tools we use to treat spider veins. The precise energy of our laser treatment is applied through the skin and to the veins. This destroys the dysfunctional veins, which will shrink and eventually disappear as a result.
Small veins usually only need a few treatments until they’re completely gone. However, larger veins may need a few extra treatments to get ideal results. To make sure we’re matching the perfect treatment for your needs, we put a limit on the vein size we will treat with lasers. Veins at or smaller than 1.2mm in diameter could qualify for this treatment option. For larger veins, we would suggest one of our other treatments.
What to Expect
This is one of those treatments that is a perfect “lunch break” option. It usually only takes between 15 to 30 minutes each session. The fact that this treatment is both fast and effective is a definite plus for many clients looking to improve smaller appearances of telangiectasia.
Sclerotherapy may be a good option for patients whose veins are a bit too large for our laser treatment. Sclerotherapy involves an injection of the sclerosing solution polidocanol, which can help your veins close properly and shrink down to a more manageable size. During treatment, we used a specialized vein light. This gives us the ability to administer the injections with pinpoint accuracy.
Sclerotherapy can treat telangiectasia and varicose veins. For the average patient, you can expect around a 40% improvement after your first treatment. That bumps up to 60% after your second, and 80% at your third. It is important to keep in mind that these expectations are a general guideline, and just as each patient is an individual, your treatment plan may need to be tweaked to suit your individual needs.
Who Is a Candidate for Sclerotherapy?
Sclerotherapy is very successful for a wide variety of cosmetic vein concerns. That said, if some of the following symptoms apply to your situation, you may benefit from a more involved vein treatment. These symptoms may include:
- Very large veins
- Veins that are causing pain
- Varicose veins that rapidly recur and pool blood
Endovascular Laser Vein Ablation
Also known as endovenous laser ablation, this is a slightly more comprehensive treatment for large and often painful veins. The greater saphenous vein is a common target, but other veins can be treated this way as well.
Before we start treatment, we may ask you to exercise in a provided exercise room beforehand. This will make your vein larger and more visible, which could potentially make the process a little easier for us.
Mapping Out a Path
The first step to this treatment is the use of an ultrasound machine to map out the vein. We may then make some harmless ink markings on your leg as a guideline. Veins that are particularly large will be the easiest to map, but the ultrasound machine still allows us that accuracy we’re looking for.
Inserting the Catheter
Once we find the right location, we will insert a catheter. The catheter serves as the tunnel we’ll be using for our laser light. When we turn the laser light on and pull it back out of the body through the catheter, it will destroy the vein with heat as it goes.
That means your blood will now have to take an alternate route and utilize healthier veins. This will lead to a smaller and improved appearance of the treated problem vein.
What To Expect After Treatment
After your treatment, we may ask you to walk around for 20 to 30 minutes. If you have a job that doesn’t require a lot of physical activity, you could even choose to return to work as soon as the next day. This treatment works quickly, so you should be feeling an improvement of your symptoms after only a few days.
This treatment can be paired with other treatments. One example is we may follow this treatment up with sclerotherapy to really nail those results.
Your Insurance May Be Able to Cover It
We are pleased to offer a variety of treatments so we can help as many patients as possible. While endovascular laser vein ablation is more involved and expensive than some of the other treatments we offer, the good news is you may not have to pay for it entirely out of pocket.
Have your veins been causing you pain and chronic swelling? Are they putting you at an increased risk of blood clots? If you answered yes to any of those questions, your insurance may be willing to pay for this treatment. If you find that your insurance is in fact willing to cover the cost, this treatment can be especially helpful and effective for varicose veins or other complex vein issues.
Making a Decision
In short, there is no “one size fits all” treatment option when it comes to cosmetic vein concerns. During a consultation, we will go over your concerns and your needs, as well as your finances. All that information will help us work together and find the right fit to bring you results and relief.
Understanding Spider Veins
Telangiectasia is characterized by purple, blue, or red blood vessels that can be seen through the skin. The most common areas to see these veins are across the legs, but the arms, face, and hands can be affected as well. Their web-like appearance is what gave these veins their common name.
Varicose veins usually can be felt through the skin, and are often larger. Telangiectasia generally can’t be felt over the surface of the skin. There aren’t many physical symptoms associated with telangiectasia, but they can sometimes cause a burning sensation or some mild discomfort.
There Can Be Multiple Causes
When it comes to appearing in the legs, the usual culprit behind this vein issue lies in the valves. Veins have the crucial role of carrying blood to the heart. To ensure that blood flows in the right direction, veins have a one-way valve that will open and close as blood is pumped through.
When a valve is damaged or weakened, the flow of blood can be hindered, causing it to pool inside the vein. Eventually, this can lead to the vein bulging and branching out. The cause behind this issue is different when it appears on the face. Facial vein issues are usually caused by blood vessels rupturing. This can be due to sun damage, or intense pressure such as pushing during childbirth, or even violent coughing.
Telangiectasia becomes more likely the older you get, but it affects the younger population as well. Some people will start to notice vein issues as early as their teenage years, while others may start to see signs of it in their 30s.
Regardless of your age or gender, the appearance of these veins can affect a person’s confidence and can make them want to hide the affected areas. Our goal is to help match you with the best treatment for your unique case, so you can get back to feeling confident in your body.
Pregnancy can put a woman at greater risk for developing spider or varicose veins. During pregnancy, the expanding uterus can add extra pressure to veins that are already carrying a higher volume of blood than they were before.
The valves in our legs can be put under more pressure if there is extra weight pressing against them. This means that it can be more difficult for the blood to be pumped through these veins, which could lead to the valves wearing out faster.
A Sedentary Lifestyle
If you are in the same position for hours at a time, the veins in your legs have to work harder to pump blood. If you work sitting down, remember to regularly stand and walk around to get that blood moving.
If a close family member struggles with spider or varicose veins, you may be more prone to them yourself. It is commonly believed that some hereditary factors may play into the development of vein issues.
A Vein Injury or Previous Blood Clot
An already injured vein will be more likely to have weakened or damaged valves, which can lead to the appearance of spider or varicose veins in the future.
Spider Vein Treatment FAQ
1. Is There Anything I Can Do at Home?
Vein issues can affect your blood circulation. This can be especially problematic if you find yourself having to either sit or stand still for extended periods of time. Compression sleeves may help your blood to keep moving in the right direction. We recommend slipping on your compression items when you’re still in bed. This may help you get the best results out of them.
2. What About Varicose Veins?
We treat those too! They’re not quite the same, and one can’t turn into the other, but they have enough similarities that many of the same treatments can be applied to either issue. Both issues, for instance, are considered a form of venous insufficiency and are caused by damaged valves. The biggest difference between the two boils down to symptoms.
Varicose veins are often deeper and larger than telangiectasia. Rather than just appearing under the skin, you can usually feel varicose veins. The appearance can range from straight, to twisted or lumped. Varicose veins can be red or the same color as your skin. They can also cause symptoms such as:
- Pain or tenderness
- A heaviness to the legs
- An increased risk for blood clots
3. Can Spider Veins Go Away on Their Own?
This vein issue is usually a cosmetic one, which can lead patients to try out different at-home remedies or lifestyle changes in hope that the appearance will improve. Exercise can help increase circulation, and will certainly benefit your overall health, but it may not serve to improve the appearance of your veins.
Over time, the appearance of the veins will likely worsen, so if your veins are decreasing your confidence or causing discomfort, we recommend seeking treatment as soon as possible. The sooner we are able to treat, the simpler the treatment process should be.
Ready to Rebuild Your Confidence?
If you’re ready for treatments that work paired with a competent and compassionate team, reach out to Reno Sparks MedSpa of Reno, NV, today for a consultation. Our office is ready to put our expertise to work and help you look and feel your best.