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Surface Sclerotherapy | Elite Vein Specialists

At a Glance

Surface sclerotherapy treats varicose veins, spider veins, and feeder vessels near the skin’s surface by injecting a drug that promotes vein closure. Surface sclerotherapy can treat diseased veins on the legs, hands, breasts, shoulders, and back. Desired results are often present after approximately two months. Risks are minimal when the procedure is performed by an experienced vein care specialist.

The Procedure

Surface sclerotherapy is the conventional form of sclerotherapy. It is a minimally-invasive vein treatment that was developed in Europe over 40 years ago to treat varicose veins and spider veins.

The procedure is simple and nearly painless, typically lasting for approximately 30 minutes. It requires the vein care physician to inject the undesired vein with a solution that closes the vein completely. At Elite Vein Specialists, the solution is comprised of only FDA-approved drugs. Guidance methods may be employed to help ensure accuracy during the injection, such as ultrasound guiding for deeper sources of reflux and Veinlite guiding for superficial spiders and feeder vessels.

What Conditions Does It Treat?

This procedure treats varicose veins and spider veins, as well as the blue-green reticular veins that are often the root cause of vein disease. Surface sclerotherapy has been successful in treating diseased veins on the legs, hands, breasts, and small spiders on shoulders or on the back.

Am I a Candidate?

Sclerotherapy can be used on candidates who want to eliminate their varicose veins and spider veins, along with the underlying cause of those vein diseases. Patients with leg fatigue or pain due to vein disease can benefit greatly from surface sclerotherapy. Traditional sclerotherapy is indicated in instances where the diseased vein and feeder veins are visible on the skin’s surface. For better precision, guiding mechanisms may need to be used to discern where treatment is necessary.

This procedure does not produce immediate results, so candidates must have patience when assessing their results. Desired results may not be seen for up to two months after the treatment.


Surface sclerotherapy is a quick and minimally-invasive procedure, and as such, the recovery is minimal. Unlike surgical vein stripping, there is virtually no downtime for traditional sclerotherapy. Most patients are up and moving directly same the procedure and are able to return to work the next day. Your physician will recommend that you wear compression bandages or stockings for about a week after the procedure to promote healthy blood flow and circulation and decrease the risk of blood clots in untreated veins. When treating larger varicose veins your physician will probably make the use of compression garments a requirement. Light exercise and walking, starting the day after the surgery, is also encouraged to aid in circulation.

Blood clots and scabs will occur in the closed vein and can present themselves as lumps under the skin surface. These blood clots are not dangerous and will resolve themselves as your body heals the scabs. Discoloration and tenderness may occur as the scabs heal.

Potential Risks

Sclerotherapy complications are minimal when the procedure is performed by an experienced vein specialist. Risks include discoloration of the vein under the skin, bruising or inflammation at the injection site, and allergic reactions from ingredients in the solution. Matting can also occur, which is a phenomenon where your body forms lots of tiny blood vessels around the injection site. Matting will usually resolve on its own but sometimes requires additional injections to relieve.

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S.B., Lafayette, CA

My large ugly varicose veins were gone with one treatment of foam sclerotherapy. I cried because I was so happy that my legs look normal again. I called Dr. Hyde because I was so excited with my results. He and his staff have been just lovely.

—S.B., Lafayette, CA