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Choosing the Right Sclerotherapy Treatment

As the weather heats up and Austinites start shedding their jackets for shorts and swimsuits, you might consider sclerotherapy as a way to erase varicose or spider veins. However, it is important to remember that not all sclerotherapy treatments were created equal.

The most commonly used sclerosant used today is FDA-approved Sotradecol. Sotradecol works by causing irritation on the inside of the vein so that the vein closes and dissolves. Sclerotherapy with Sotradecol is generally quick and not very painful. Asclera, another sclerosant offered by Dr. Zimmet, acts in the same way. The medication, which was originally meant to be an anesthetic, was approved by the FDA in 2010 and has since grown in popularity in the US.  Asclera (polidocanol) has been available in Europe since the 1960s, but required studies were only recently submitted to and approved by the FDA.

Some doctors, however, still use a hypertonic saline as a sclerosant, through which the vein is sealed due to dehydration. Unfortunately, this method of vein treatment irritates nerve endings due to its high sodium content and is thus quite painful. Virtually all patients find sclerotherapy with Sotradecol or Asclera significantly less painful than hypertonic saline. Sarah Wexler, an Allure magazine writer who tried Asclera, reported experiencing much less pain using Asclera, as well as minimal bruising.

Sclerotherapy can be a great way to boost confidence in your body, especially with summer on the horizon. Go to a physician who is very experienced and knowledgeable about sclerotherapy.

Benefits of Sotradecol and Asclera:

  • Minimal pain
  • Proven efficacy
  • Excellent safety profile

Problems with hypertonic saline sclerosant:

  • Intense burning during procedure
  • Possibility of skin ulceration

Photo: Oneras

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