What procedure will kill my eye vein?
November 11, 2011 11:15 AM   Subscribe

I went to a ENT/facial surgeon recently for something unrelated, and I asked the doctor, who also does facial plastic surgery, what I could do about a large vein I have under my right eye. He had me speak with a woman in the office, and she told me, after looking at my vein(s), about a procedure for veins like mine (not spider veins) wherein they inject saline into the vein and then it goes away. What procedure is that? How much does it cost? Do you have a recommendation for a place in Philadelphia, PA?

Just to be clear, I don't have spider veins under my eye. It's a larger, single vein (I have a slightly smaller one under my left eye). I've tried to call the office (seriously, several times) to find this info, but they've been unhelpful. It's bothered me all my life, and it makes me look like I constantly have uneven dark circles. This procedure seems like it would be great! Help me find out what it is. Thank you!
posted by two lights above the sea to Health & Fitness (11 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Hypertonic saline sclerotherapy is a common treatment for small, spider veins (non-varicose veins). Spider veins are common in the face, thighs, feet and ankles. It is a minimally invasive procedure, whereby a doctor injects an saline, which is an irritant, into a vein. The liquid irritates the lining of the vein causing inflammation and coagulation. The vein eventually hardens and fades away. The procedure is not very painful, but it is not painless.

If a doctor's office is unresponsive when you are trying to schedule an appointment (which means money in their pocket) then I tend to think that's a bad sign. How responsive will they be for you post-surgery?
posted by zarq at 11:59 AM on November 11, 2011 [2 favorites]

Response by poster: Whoops! I didn't make it clear before, but the office I spoke to didn't actually perform this procedure, which is likely why they were so unhelpful. Definitely wouldn't be going there for this procedure.
posted by two lights above the sea at 12:47 PM on November 11, 2011

Response by poster: And here are some really creepy pictures of my face to show you the vein.
posted by two lights above the sea at 1:05 PM on November 11, 2011

Where are the veins? I looked at the pictures and didn't see any. (This may mean I'm clueless but it may also mean that the veins don't appear as prominent to other people as they do to you.)
posted by alms at 1:42 PM on November 11, 2011 [5 favorites]

OP's hubs here. I only rarely see it in person, but can see it in this photo. Depends on the lighting.
posted by supercres at 1:55 PM on November 11, 2011

Response by poster: I made notes on each picture to help you see it, and added an addition one from right now with no makeup on. The vein definitely there (as in, I'm not imagining them), but I'm wearing makeup in all the other pictures. Sorry!
posted by two lights above the sea at 1:55 PM on November 11, 2011

Response by poster: And one more thing! Can we please not make this a "you really don't need to do this" thread? It's definitely there, and it bothers me. Thanks!
posted by two lights above the sea at 1:57 PM on November 11, 2011 [1 favorite]

Best answer: The American Society for Plastic Surgeons has a section on Sclerotherapy. There's a menu of FAQ links on the right.
posted by zarq at 2:10 PM on November 11, 2011

2nding Burhanistan and zarq.
posted by StrikeTheViol at 2:14 PM on November 11, 2011

It seems that many doctors do not recommend sclerotherapy for facial veins, but prefer other treatment.
posted by ocherdraco at 4:09 PM on November 11, 2011

You have lovely, fair, delicate skin, so the vein seems more obvious to you. If you look at lots of fair-skinned people, many of them have the same visible vein. I would talk to a plastic surgeon who specializes in eyes/face before I did anything else.

I know you are bothered by it, but I think it's not noticeable, and people notice that you are so pretty, not a vein.
posted by theora55 at 7:35 AM on November 12, 2011 [1 favorite]

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