How to get rid of spider veins? (and into short-shorts)
March 20, 2012 11:21 AM   Subscribe

What is the most effective procedure for removing these ghastly spider veins from my left thigh? Short-shorts season is upon us, and now this is on my mind... Lasers? Sclerotherapy? I am 31, female.

I started getting spider veins over the last 4-5 years, but only on one leg. They are on the front and back of my left thigh, mid-way down.
I go through phases of not exercising (espec in the winter) and I know that this contributes.

I have tried taking horse chestnut pills (there are a few studies that support their effectiveness), but they make me nauseous, so I stopped. Has anyone has success with this supplement?

Also: Should I be worried about these spider veins and the fact that I am getting them only on one leg?
posted by cejl to Health & Fitness (5 answers total) 7 users marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Honestly I would bring that up with your doctor and he/she might refer you to get an ultrasound on the veins in your leg. The one leg thing is worrisome. I'm almost your age and have had sclerotherapy twice this past year for both legs (costs about $400 a session [I'm in a major city] for the max amount of sclerosing solution they can put into you) I also take horse chestnut supplements, mostly preventatively (I can't tell if they've helped, but studies say they do), and haven't gotten any new spider veins, but be aware that a few small clusters of veins might appear near the injection site, which can be frustrating. This can be a reaction to the treatment and go away, or it happens because your veins aren't pumping the blood back strongly enough and now that the weak spider veins are closed, others will just be flooded and stretch. I've been very happy with the treatments, get them done if you'll feel less self-conscious! I've had concentrated patches on both legs since I was a teenager and this is the first time since that I've felt 100% confident in shorts. And get it done soon before the weather gets even better! You'll have some bruising for a few weeks. Get 20-30 strength compression stockings for recovery (and also wear these at work regardless if you stand or sit all day.) To heal faster ask if your doctor will drain the trapped blood after two weeks, you'll have less lingering discoloration caused by the blood being reabsorbed. I just did this myself, but, I'm kind of a over-do it yourself-er and not squeamish. Also, don't get it done during the hotness of summer... my first treatment was and I nearly died having to wear the stockings every day all day for two weeks.
posted by Sayuri. at 12:05 PM on March 20, 2012 [1 favorite]

I think most dermatologists these days treat spider veins with a combination of injection sclerotherapy and laser therapy. If the veins aren't actually varicose, I don't think that most doctors would suggest they're anything to worry about in terms of your overall circulatory health.
posted by Sidhedevil at 12:07 PM on March 20, 2012

Laser therapy on spider veins is cheap and effective. I got a few on my right thigh after having babies.
posted by Dragonness at 12:48 PM on March 20, 2012

I am certainly no expert, but do you cross one leg over the other most/all of the time? Maybe that could be your spider vein problem. Definitely ask your doctor, though.
posted by annsunny at 2:03 PM on March 20, 2012

FYI, I had laser therapy on one small spider vein on my face, and it made it worse.
posted by MexicanYenta at 6:45 PM on March 20, 2012

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