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Also known as “spider veins, flare veins and broken veins”, thread veins are often confused with varicose veins. They are common particularly in women and patients often complain of dissatisfaction with their appearance though they may occasionally cause itching or minor aches. These stretched tiny blood vessels in the skin are normal but can appear prominent in people with pale complexions. They are often found on the face and legs, usually in the absence of varicose veins. If you are concerned about your thread veins we will assess them clinically and with an ultrasound scan. Various forms of treatment are available and can be discussed during your consultation.
The type of treatment that is best for you will be discussed after your consultation. It will depend on a number of issues. Firstly, any underlying varicose veins, if present, should be treated. Then depending on the size and appearance of your thread veins, you will be offered micro-sclerotherapy or Veinwave therapy. Somtimes the treatment will involve the combination of the two therapies (see below).
Micro sclerotherapy is still the ideal option for treating the larger threas veins. It is an outpatient treatment that can take 15-30 mins depending on the amount of thread veins that need treating. You must be clear about the risks and benefits of this treatment. Thread veins are prone to recurrence and treatment does not always get rid of all the veins. Sometimes, you might require a couple of treatments to get rid of a single patch of thread veins. The patient information leaflet from the Circulation foundation is useful for understanding what should be expected in the first few weeks after treatment as often the appearance is worse at first. It may take 6 weeks or more before you see the full benefits.
Veinwave is an electrical device which uses an ultra-fine insulated needle to treat the smaller thread veins. It is a service that we carry out in the clinic and can take 30-40 mins in the clinic depending on the extent of the thread veins. You can find out more about this treatment by watching a self explanatory video by Dr Rivkin MD from California (see below).