How do you Treat Leg Veins ?

How to treat spider veins?

Sclerotherapy is recognised as the gold standard method of treating spider and reticular veins. It has been used for decades and is recognised as a safe and effective procedure.

However, like all treatments it may not work for all patients and does have potential side-effects.

Sclerotherapy works by injecting a chemical agent into the vein that seals the vein and helps to redirect the blood to the right direction. 

A fine needle is used for the injection and causes minimal discomfort. Some people describe it as a slight burning sensation.

Each vein might require several injections given several weeks in between.

As the sealed vein does not carry blood anymore, it is re-absorbed by the body. The whole process can take up to 6 months depending on the size and extent of the spider veins.

It is simple procedure, with no downtime and minimal discomfort that can be performed as an outpatient.

Sclerotherapy works by causing the vein to close redirecting the blood to healthier veins. The collapsed vein is then reabsorbed and disappears.

Sclerotherapy has been around for more than 100 years.

The solution injected is called a sclerosant, which acts on the inner surface of the vein to trigger a reaction that collapses the vein.

In the past, some doctors used hypertonic saline which will act by dehydrating the vein.

Nowadays, the main sclerosants are Sodium Tetradecyl Sulphate (STS) and Polidocanol.

At a certain concentration they clump into spheres dispersing the normal architecture of the inside of the vein. This leads the vein to harden and eventually disappear

Spider veins can disappear on their own if they appeared after pregnancy or taking some medications. Although, most of the time they don’t go away on their own. 

They are signs of disrupted blood flow and the cause of it can be deeper than what you think. 

It can result from a permanent damage of the valves which prevents the blood to backflow.

Keep in mind that despite being unattractive, spider veins are not harmful.

You can try to live with them or cover them up.

If you notice your veins getting worse, you could have them examined by your GP or a Phlebolgist(  vein doctor). 

A personalised treatment can reduce their appearance and bring a good cosmetic outcome, improving quality of life and self awareness.

Sadly, creams are not a permanent fix.
They can briefly mask the appearance of the spider veins, but the problem remains.
Topical treatments do not penetrate the skin deep enough to address spider veins at their source.

Vascular laser can be a good solution for tiny spider veins quickly, safely and effectively.

The vascular laser releases pulses of light energy causing the blood within the vein to coagulate and disappear.

It can remove unsightly spider veins from any part of the body.

Although, vascular laser is not suitable for bigger spider veins and varicose veins.

Laser can effectively treat the red/purple spider veins, but sclerotherapy is useful for the larger blue/green varicose veins. Often a combination of the two is used to enhance the outcome.

A through assessment of the venous system in the legs is important for planning effective treatments and finding the source of the problem.




How to treat varicose veins?

The most effective treatment is a thorough medical assessment with your phlebologist (vein doctor). 

Endovenous ablation is the preferred treatment for larger varicose veins. Endovenous ablation works by inserting a fibre into the large vein and heating the tip of the fibre. The vein is closed by heat, providing long lasting results.

Endovenous ablation became an excellent alternative to vein stripping.

Often this treatment is complemented with ultrasound guided sclerotherapy to close the distal branches of the varicose vein.

Dr Gilles Laur will need to fully understand the extent of your condition which will encompass  a complete medical history check, followed :

  • A detailed examination; thoroughly inspecting your legs while standing, checking for swelling and other signs.
  • A Duplex Ultrasound scan; a painless non-invasive scan informing  what is happening inside your veins. 

The treatment plan is typically drafted with  these goals in mind:

  • Improving circulation
  • Preventing and treating complications
  • Removing abnormal veins
  • Improving appearance

Sadly, varicose veins do not go away on their own.

They are the landmark of Chronic Venous Insufficiency, which is a backflow of the blood due to a permanent damage to the valves of the veins.


How to treat swollen legs?

If your legs start to swell for no apparent reason, especially with unexplained leg pain, difficulty breathing, or chest pain, you need to seek medical care attention.


Swelling or edema is caused by too much fluid trapped in the body’s tissues. It can presents everywhere, but more commonly in the legs.

To decrease swollen legs you can :

  • Wear compression stockings. Pressure helps to prevent fluid from building up in the tissue.
  • Walking and biking are also key options. They use our calf muscles to reduce the swelling in the legs by pumping the blood back to the heart and preventing the fluid to build up.
  • Leg elevation helps to move the fluid and promote blood return.
  • Massage creates localised pressure and move the fluid out of the area.
  • Salt reduction. Salt can increase the build up of fluid and worsens edema.

Swollen leg can resolve spontaneously when lying flat.

Sadly, Leg swelling is merely the tip of the iceberg.

Swollen leg can be a result of:

  • Kidney disease
  • Heart failure
  • Liver disease
  • DVT ( leg clot)
  • Obesity
  • Injury and tendon inflammation
  • Infection
  • Varicose veins
  • Lymphedema
  • Lipoedema
  • Fracture

It is expected to see a reduction to a disappearance of the swelling by addressing the cause of the swelling

How to treat ulcer?

Leg ulcers affect 1% of the Australian population and are mainly caused by poor circulation.

The type of medical treatment and intervention depends on whether the wound is caused by problems with the veins, with the arteries or metabolic issues such as diabetes.

The main risk factors are high cholesterol, high blood pressure, smoking, badly managed diabetes, varicose vein and age.

The most common cause is poor circulation from the veins preventing the blood to go back to the heart.

Most venous leg ulcers heal within 3 to 4 months if they’re treated properly in association with compression stockings.

Although, some ulcers may take longer to heal, and a very small number never heal. 

They are several ways to prevent ulcers:

  • weight control
  • exercise
  • compression stockings
  • early intervention of vein and arterial issues
  • skin care with daily moituriser

Most venous leg ulcers heal within 3 to 4 months. Very rarely an ulcer will heal faster than that.

Although, by addressing early on the damaged veins, ulcer can heal at a very fast pace.

How to treat itchiness and skin changes on the legs?

 Corticosteroids, cream are generally effective in reducing the inflammation and itching of  leg pigmentation.

Sadly, it can only be used for a short period of time of 1-2 weeks.

The main treatment for patients with venous eczema is to moisturise daily with skin care products such as Vaseline, Sorbolene, or Cerave cream.

There is a cure for early stages of venous eczema.
Unfortunately, if the condition has been present for too long, the appearance can’t be completely reversed.
Early treatment is key.
The best approach is to control or eliminate the chronic edema and the backflow of blood in the veins.
This will require an evaluation by a phlebologist (vein doctor) through a thorough ultrasound scanning of your veins and complete medical review.
The main factors that can make venous eczema worse are
  • High blood pressure.
  • Varicose veins.
  • Obesity
  • Heart disease 
  • Kidney failure.
  • A blood clot
  • Many pregnancies.
  • Past surgery or injury in the area.
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