Purple, blue, and red squiggly lines running about on your legs. They are about as welcome as having the assistant principal attend the recent prom for your high school student. Spider veins and small leg veins can make you downright hesitant to put on shorts or a skirt, and that’s a crime in sunny Utah where we’re always outside in summer!
Dr. Joseph can take care of those obnoxious veins with sclerotherapy or with laser vein therapy. We have patients decide which treatment method they would prefer.
What causes spider veins?
Veins are the routes for the blood to return to the heart. And sometimes they have a real fight with gravity. This is especially true in the legs, where the blood needs to go directly up the leg. As we age, the strength of the support tissues and even of the veins themselves can diminish. This can cause the blood to back up and pool in spots. This shows itself in spider and varicose veins. Because spider veins are just below the surface of the skin they are very visible. Varicose veins are usually larger and deeper.
What is sclerotherapy?
Other than being somewhat of a tongue twister, sclerotherapy is the most effective method for removing unwanted veins on your legs. First developed way back in the 1930s, sclerotherapy is a simple process. Dr. Jensen uses a very small needle and injects a saline solution into the vein in question. The saline irritates the wall of the vein, much like rush hour traffic on I-15 irritates you. This irritation causes the vein wall to collapse and shut off any blood in the vein. This minimizes the appearance of the vein instantly, and the body eventually absorbs it. Any blood that was routed through the vein is instantly rerouted to other, healthier veins.
What is laser vein therapy?
Dr. Jensen is a big fan of using lasers more and more to remove spider veins. We set the laser wavelength to match the color of the unwanted vein. When the short pulses of energy are delivered down into the skin, the laser energy is absorbed by the hemoglobin and the vein wall. That light converts to heat and causes the vein wall to collapse, sealing off the vein and coagulating the hemoglobin within. Once the vein walls collapses, the vein is gradually absorbed by the body and it fully disappears in a few weeks.
After your vein treatment, you may have some bruising at the site of the veins. We usually put your legs in compression stockings that you’ll wear for two weeks during waking hours. This compression improves your results so most veins need only one treatment to disappear.
It’s never a bad time to tell your spider veins to take a hike…and not in the Uintas! Call Dr. Jensen at (801) 728-9258 to schedule a consultation.