Do you have painful, problematic, or otherwise unwanted varicose leg veins or spider veins? Our team of vascular experts at Somerset Surgical Associates, LLC in Somerville, New Jersey, can help you get rid of them for good with a minimally invasive, maximally effective treatment called sclerotherapy.

Widely regarded as “the gold-standard solution” for small to mid-sized varicose veins as well as sprawling networks of smaller spider veins, sclerotherapy is done in two ways:

  • Visually, to treat varicose or spider veins that are fully observable along the skin
  • With ultrasound imaging, to treat veins that twist inward and can’t be fully seen

Sclerotherapy offers two key benefits over other minimally invasive vein treatment options: It works quickly, delivering optimal vein-clearing results in no time flat, and it comes with virtually no post-treatment downtime. Here’s how it works, and what you can expect during recovery. 

Clearing veins with sclerotherapy

Simple and effective, sclerotherapy is a minimally invasive vein treatment that involves using an FDA-approved chemical (sclerosing agent) to target and collapse an unwanted varicose vein or spider vein from the inside out. 

When we inject this sclerosing agent into your unwanted vein, it irritates and inflames the vessel’s inner lining, causing it to swell and seal shut. Your blood flow automatically reroutes itself into healthy veins, and the treated varicose vein or spider vein collapses and gradually fades away. 

At Somerset Surgical Associates, LLC, our team performs sclerotherapy with an advanced microfoam sclerosing agent called Varithena®. This effective medication is FDA-approved to clear problematic veins above or below the knee and alleviate vein-related symptoms like leg pain and swelling

All about sclerotherapy recovery 

As a minimally invasive, in-office treatment that only requires the aid of a local anesthetic, sclerotherapy doesn’t come with any post-procedural downtime or a lengthy recovery; you can drive yourself home from your appointment and resume your usual routine right away. Let’s take a closer look: 

Zero downtime

There’s no downtime following sclerotherapy, meaning you can resume most activities after your treatment session. This includes walking, which is recommended to support improved circulation and faster vascular recovery as your blood flow works to reroute itself into healthy nearby veins. 

Recovery timeline 

You can expect to be in “passive recovery” for about a month following your sclerotherapy session. This means most of the healing process is happening inside your vascular system, and you just need to follow a few post-treatment guidelines to support optimal recovery.  


For the first two weeks of your recovery, we ask you to wear a fitted compression garment (stocking or wrap) on your treated leg every day, only removing it at night when you sleep. 

This medical-grade device gently squeezes the treated veins, providing an invaluable “vascular assist” that boosts lower extremity circulation, prevents blood pooling and clotting, minimizes fluid buildup, and fosters improved vein function. 

Recovery dos and don’ts

Our team provides a list of recommended dos and don’ts, most of which only apply to the first 48 hours after sclerotherapy. After your sclerotherapy treatment, you should:

  • Only use pain relievers that don’t ease inflammation (i.e., acetaminophen) 
  • Shower with lukewarm water (hot water makes blood vessels expand)
  • Gently wash the injection sites with a mild cleanser and lukewarm water
  • Get moderate exercise; walking is an especially good choice for circulation  

 It’s beneficial to continue taking daily walks for at least a month following sclerotherapy, and preferably indefinitely. Besides promoting optimal circulation and recovery, this simple form of exercise helps foster enhanced vein clearance as it reduces your risk of recurrence.  

 For the first 48 hours after sclerotherapy, you should avoid

  • Taking aspirin, ibuprofen, and other anti-inflammatory pain medications
  • Sitting in a hot tub or sauna, or taking a hot bath (lukewarm baths are fine)
  • Exposing the treated area to direct sunlight (including tanning beds)
  • Applying hot compresses (or any form of heat therapy) to the treated area

It’s also important to avoid vigorous exercise for at least one week, and extended periods of inactivity (i.e., long airplane or car trips), for at least one month. 

Common side effects

Common sclerotherapy side effects include general leg discomfort and bruising or redness at the injection site. Usually mild and brief, such effects often resolve in a few hours or days. 

Sclerotherapy vein-clearing results

In the weeks and months following sclerotherapy, your treated vein forms into harmless scar tissue that gradually fades from view as it’s reabsorbed by your body. Small spider veins and varicose veins usually disappear in three to six weeks, while mid-sized varicose veins may take three or four months to clear completely. 

To learn more about what to expect after sclerotherapy at Somerset Surgical Associates, LLC, give us a call today, or click online to schedule a visit at one of our offices in Somerville, Hillsborough, and Somerset, New Jersey anytime.


We accept most insurance providers. If you have specific questions regarding your coverage, please contact us for additional information.

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