How Long Until You See Results of Treated Varicose Veins?
There are various ways to treat varicose veins, including surgical extraction and minimally invasive treatments like sclerotherapy, radiofrequency ablation, endovenous laser ablation, vein adhesives, and mechanochemical ablation. Results from surgical extraction take longer to see, since there is more swelling and bruising and multiple incisions to heal. Minimally invasive procedures work immediately, presenting visible results to the patient within a few days.
Most patients will notice a distinct difference in the treated varicose vein’s appearance in less than a week, and a full regression within a few weeks or months. Severely complicated or extensive varicose veins may require a follow-up treatment for a flawless finish. Click HERE for quick resolution of your varicose veins at our award-winning California vein center.
Do Minimally Invasive Treatments Work Faster Than Surgery?
Minimally invasive vein ablation treatments administer either sclerosing solutions, vein glue, mechanical disruption, or thermal energy directly to the walls of the varicose vein. With sclerotherapy, an injected sclerosant closes off the vein, which is then harmlessly absorbed by the body. With vein adhesives, injected cyanoacrylate glue hardens and blocks blood flow, redirecting blood to other veins, rendering the unhealthy vein non-viable and invisible. Thermal treatments direct heat along the vein with a special catheter, causing it to collapse and disappear. Mechanochemical ablation uses both sclerosants and mechanical agitation to seal off and destroy the faulty vein.
Minimally invasive treatments begin working right away, and their results are visible faster than with surgery, due to reduced swelling, bruising, and scarring. In addition, the procedures themselves are much faster than surgery. Sclerotherapy typically takes 15 minutes, and other procedures are often done in under 30 minutes. In contrast, surgery requires time for general anesthesia to set in, surgical time, and recovery time, including time off from typical activities while you heal.
Do I Need Time to Recover from General or Local Anesthetics?
With traditional vein stripping surgery, you’ll need general anesthesia, which extends the prep and recovery time, and also carries some risks. Minimally invasive vein ablation does not require general anesthesia, and many modalities do not require a local anesthetic either. Thermal procedures like radiofrequency ablation and endovenous laser ablation do require an injection of tumescent anesthesia around the treated varicose veins, to protect surrounding tissue from heat. However, this local anesthetic does not prevent you from getting up and moving around immediately following the procedure.
What’s the Recovery Period for a Vein Ablation Procedure?
In addition to asking, “How long after vein ablation do you see results,” many patients also ask how long it takes to recover from the vein ablation procedure. Minimally invasive methods rarely involve any downtime at all. Patients might experience temporary swelling or mild discomfort, but it’s not significant enough to prohibit them from heading right back to work and resuming their other obligations.
Your vein doctor might recommend avoiding strenuous exercise for a few days, depending on the severity of your vein damage and the procedure you had. But you can walk and participate in moderate exercise right away. There are no large bandages, stitches, or open wounds to contend with. You might wear compression stockings, if recommended, or elevate your legs while at rest temporarily, but otherwise, you won’t need to change your lifestyle.
When Do Correlated Symptoms Improve After Vein Treatments?
Many patients with varicose veins also have frustrating symptoms like leg swelling, heaviness, cramping, restlessness, achiness, and itching, prior to vein treatment. Others have more severe issues like venous ulcerations, profuse bleeding, hyperpigmentation, and venous stasis dermatitis. These symptoms stem from a disease called Chronic Venous Insufficiency, which is frequently the cause of varicose veins and spider veins.
Our vein doctors use cutting edge technology to treat Chronic Venous Insufficiency, along with varicose veins, often in a single appointment. By closing off the broken valves that cause varicosities, we restore circulation to improve all of the unpleasant symptoms of compromised veins. Our treatments are quick, gentle, and precise, so you start feeling better right away.
How Long Will the Treatment Area be Swollen or Painful?
Minimally invasive vein treatments cause significantly fewer complications than surgery, and a dramatic reduction in pain and swelling. Since these procedures treat the vein inside the body, with tiny needles and catheters inserted in the skin, vein doctors don’t have to cut down to access the vein. As such, there is minimal discomfort. Most patients report no pain whatsoever, just a mild pinching sensation when the vein is treated or a temporary hardening sensation in the treatment area as their vein seals shut.
How Long Do You Wear Compression Stockings or Bandages?
Some patients will not need to wear compression stockings, particularly those with spider veins or small varicose veins. Others will be advised to wear compression stockings briefly to enhance circulation and prevent clotting or swelling in the leg. This timeframe ranges from a couple of days to a couple of weeks, depending on your vascular health. Unlike surgical bandages, bandages for minimally invasive procedures are small and typically only worn for 24 hours, or until your vein doctor permits you to bathe or shower.
How Soon Can You Resume Strenuous Exercise?
Most vein specialists recommend avoiding strenuous exercise for 3-7 days, depending on the treatment modality and severity of the treated vein. Mild and moderate exercise are encouraged, however, to prevent swelling, cramping, or in very rare cases, blood clots. It’s generally advised to walk immediately after treatment and every day thereafter, avoiding long periods of sitting or standing still for the next few days.
Where Can You Treat Varicose Veins Quickly in California?
If you want rapid treatment and resolution of your varicose veins, visit our state-of-the-art vein treatment centers in San Diego and San Jose. Our Harvard-trained vein doctors have extensive experience with all the latest technologies and offer a full range of minimally invasive vein treatments.
All of our ablation procedures are performed in-office with no general anesthesia, hospitalization, or recovery period involved. Our patients are thrilled to learn how quick and easy it is to resolve their frustrating vein issues. Choose our award-winning team for prompt and unparalleled results!