You might have heard of sclerotherapy for the veins in the legs, but what about sclerotherapy for the hands? As part of the natural aging process, the skin on the back of your hands will lose elasticity and volume. Some people feel that visible veins on the hands can make them appear older, so techniques for rejuvenation may be important to explore. At R Shaheen Vascular in Mountain View, CA, we know that sclerotherapy hand rejuvenation can be an effective option to reduce the appearance of visible veins on the hands for many people.
What Happens During Sclerotherapy Hand Rejuvenation?
Sclerotherapy hand rejuvenation is similar to sclerotherapy treatments on the legs. This is a minimally-invasive technique that uses the injection of a special solution to collapse building veins.
The solution used for this treatment is called polidocanol, a gentle chemical that closes visible bulging veins over several days or weeks. When the visible veins collapse, your blood will be redirected to other veins in your hands and your body will naturally eliminate the collapsed veins. Overall, this treatment can make your hands appear much smoother and younger.
Why Veins Become Visible
Many factors are involved in why the veins in your hands may become visible as you age. Unlike varicose veins in the legs, which can be caused by weight gain, visible veins on the back of the hand are caused by other factors, including genetics, your general age, and lifestyle choices.
Age is the leading cause of visible veins in the hands. The natural aging process involves the decrease of proteins and sugars in the skin that helps the skin remain supple and youthful-looking. As your skin produces less collagen and elastin, your skin becomes thinner and veins become more visible, particularly on areas of the body where the skin is already thin – such as the hands.
Furthermore, your veins themselves become more fragile as you age, especially the valves that control blood flow through the body. As the valves in your veins start to become dysfunctional, blood is more likely to pool in veins, which can enlarge the size of veins over time and make these veins more visible through the skin.
Regular exercise is one of the best ways to maintain good health, keep steady body weight, and build strength in your body. However, some forms of exercise are more likely to increase the size of the veins in the hands and other parts of the body. For example, lifting weights and rigorous exercises involving the hands, such as boxing, may contribute to bulging veins.
Our genetics are completely out of our control. Things like our natural hair color, how soon our hair turns gray, how likely we are to scar, and even how large the veins in our hands will become as we age are all determined by genetic factors. One way to determine if genetics are associated with your aesthetic concerns is to look at your blood relatives, especially ones who are older than you. If your parents or grandparents had visible veins on the back of their hand, then you likely will, too.
Like genetics, hormones are also largely out of our control. Hormonal changes can contribute to the development of visible veins in the hands, particularly changes like menopause and pregnancy. The veins in the hands can become more visible during these periods simply because of hormonal changes that alter blood pressure and collagen production.
Bodyweight is the most common cause of varicose veins in the legs, but your weight may also impact the appearance of the back of your hands. Very thin people or those who do not have high amounts of body fat will generally have less fat padding on the back of the hands, which will allow the veins to become more visible. Some people who lose a significant amount of weight will also notice that their veins become visible as they shed fat.
Who Are Good Candidates?
So, who are good candidates for sclerotherapy hand rejuvenation? Sclerotherapy is generally a safe treatment for most people, and since this treatment is very reliable, most people who want to reduce the appearance of visible veins on their hands are likely to make good candidates. This hand rejuvenation treatment can be used by people who have moderate to severe concerns, including younger people.
Candidates for this treatment should be relatively healthy with no health issues associated with the hands or cardiovascular system. Women interested in this treatment should not be pregnant or breastfeeding.
Attending a consultation is an important step to determine your eligibility for this treatment. During your consultation, we will need to go over your general medical history to assess whether or not you are in good health for this treatment. We will examine the condition of the veins on your hands to determine if this treatment is appropriate for your concerns.
Your Treatment Goals
Your treatment goals are also very important to determine whether or not you are a good candidate for this hand rejuvenation treatment. You must understand that this treatment only addresses visible or building veins on your hands. If your aesthetic concerns are related to wrinkles or volume loss on the back of the hands, then you may need to consider a different rejuvenation treatment, such as a dermal filler.
What Should You Expect From Treatment?
Just like sclerotherapy for the legs, you will usually need a few treatment sessions to effectively treat the visible veins on the hands. Sometimes both hands are treated at one time, and sometimes you will have separate sessions for each hand depending on your unique concerns.
Each treatment session will take about 30 minutes to complete. Your appointments will be spaced about two to four weeks apart. It’s common to need one to two treatments for each hand to achieve optimal results.
What Is Recovery Like?
The recovery time associated with this treatment is relatively minimal. Most people will be able to work and complete daily activities as normal during the two-week recovery period. The most important portion of your recovery will be to wear compression gloves for the majority of the day, except when showering, to encourage better blood redirection and healing.
When Will You See Results?
Many people will notice visible improvements as soon as two weeks after the first treatment appointment. Your initial results will have the effect of making your veins appear less visible. With a second treatment, these visible veins will fade over several weeks and your hands will appear much more youthful.
For patients who experience pain associated with visible or bulging veins in the hands, your symptoms will improve slowly after each of your treatments. Most people will be able to see the most significant results about two to three months after your first treatment session.
How Long Will Results Last?
Because developing visible veins in the hands is part of the natural aging process, your results should not be considered permanent even if your results can last for a few years or longer. To that end, many people want to maintain the results of this hand rejuvenation treatment for as long as possible. There are some lifestyle habits you can adopt to prolong your results or prevent severe bulging veins in the future.
Gentle hand exercises and stretches for the fingers are a good way to keep your hands in good condition. This may be especially important for mature people who also suffer from arthritis, as regular exercise of the hands and fingers can improve blood flow and maintain the health, strength, and flexibility of the hands.
Exposure to UVA and UVB rays in the sunlight is the leading cause of visible aging – even for the hands. When the skin is exposed to UV rays, the skin cells will be damaged and the skin will become increasingly lax, thin, and damaged. Over time, thinning skin on the back of the hands will also allow your veins to be more visible.
The best way to reduce aging related to sun exposure is to wear SPF on visible skin when you plan to be outside, including the skin on the back of the hands. For certain outdoor activities, waterproof sunscreen may be a good option.
Rejuvenate Your Hands
The appearance of your hands may prematurely age you, particularly if there are visible veins on the back of your hands. Whether you try sclerotherapy for the hands alone or in combination with hand rejuvenation treatment with dermal fillers to improve skin volume on the hands, you can turn back the clock and have younger-looking hands with only a few simple treatments. Contact R Shaheen Vascular in Mountain View, CA to schedule your first appointment today.