Sclerotherapy is a non-surgical procedure, commonly performed for the treatment of spider and varicose veins.
Sclerotherapy works by blocking off the vein and stopping blood flow in it. Without blood flowing through it, the vein will become invisible.
There are 3 common contributors to dilated veins:
Hereditary - those people with a family history of leg veins inherit a genetic tendency for the venous system to have increased pressure over time.
Pregnancy - related to both the increased venous backflow as the uterus grows and pushes on the venous system, as well as the increased blood volume in pregnancy.
Prolonged standing - at rest with our legs up, we have no pressure in the venous system. On standing the pressure increases dramatically to 100mmHg.
Walking gets the calf muscle pumping and drops the pressure to 30-40mmHg. With prolonged standing, the high pressures override the valves assisting in the return of blood, the valves then break down and blood pools in the leg veins. Contrary to popular belief, crossing your legs has no effect on developing leg veins.
Sclerotherapy is very effective. The success rate is about 85%. It depends on the flow of blood between the superficial and deep networks of veins in the leg.