Hand Vein Treatment
As we age, our hands can be the area that shows our age in the most dramatic way. Veins on the backs of our hands tend to bulge and protrude more with every passing year. This is due to thinning skin and loss of elasticity in both the skin and the vein wall. It is also directly related to declining collagen production with natural aging and loss of subcutaneous fat in the area.
Dr. Kapusta brings his triple board certification expertise and experience to improving the look of the veins on your hands. He typically uses sclerotherapy, but for larger veins may use other treatments.
Why are veins showing on the backs of my hands?
Natural aging is usually why we are seeing more and more bulging veins on the backs of our hands, but there can actually be a variety of reasons this happens:
- Temporarily rising blood pressure and body temperature — During exercise or when we are working with our hands, blood flow increases in the area. This swells the veins. Veins also swell in warmer climates, such as here in Houston, as the body sends more blood to the surface of the skin to cool down.
- Weightlifting — Weightlifters often have raised, rope-like veins on their hands and lower arms because they develop hard muscles under them.
- Natural aging — As we age our skin thins and fat is redistributed away from the backs of the hands. Also, collagen production declines every year after our 20th birthday, so it does not provide the same framework to mask the veins on our hands.
- Being underweight — If you are under your ideal body weight, your hand veins become more visible.
- Phlebitis — Large veins can be due to the swelling and inflammation of phlebitis.
- Varicose veins — Although they are far more common on the legs, varicose veins can show up on the hands and arms. Varicose veins on the hands can be a sign of more serious health issues with your circulation.
- Genetics — Some people are prone to bulging veins on their hands if their parents had the same condition.
What are the benefits of removing hand veins?
The backs of our hands are always out there for everyone to see. It is not as if we spend much time in gloves here in Houston. They also show aging quite dramatically due to the way our skin thins on the backs of the hands. That means your hands can be showing your age, and probably then some.
When Dr. Kapusta removes these veins. The backs of your hands become much smoother younger looking.
Who is a good candidate for hand vein treatment?
If you have bulging, exposed veins on the backs of your hands, odds are you are a great candidate for treatment with Dr. Kapusta. The only people not applicable for these treatments have active skin conditions or infections on the hand skin. As soon as the inflammation resolves, you can then have treatment to lessen the appearance of the veins.
How are hand veins treated?
The main method for removing these unsightly hand veins is sclerotherapy. Amazingly, sclerotherapy was first developed to treat varicose veins back in the 1930s, but it remains the gold standard for closing off unwanted veins. Some larger veins may need laser ablation or microphlebectomy. You can read about all three of these treatments in more detail on these pages on our site: Sclerotherapy, Laser ablation , Microphlebectomy
Here’s a brief overview of how Dr. Kapusta performs all three treatments:
- Sclerotherapy — In this simple treatment, Dr. Kapusta utilizes a sclerosant solution. This is typically either hypertonic saline or hypertonic dextrose or a combination of the two. The sclerosant is injected into the bulging vein and it irritates the vein walls, causing them to collapse inward. This closes off the vein. Any blood flowing through the vein is instantly redirected to an adjacent healthy vein.
- Endovenous laser ablation — Here the area above and around the unwanted vein is locally anesthetized. Then Dr. Kapusta inserts a thin laser fiber into the vein. The laser is pulsed, and the light energy converts to heat. This heat makes the vein walls collapse. The laser fiber is pulled down the length of the vein until the entire unwanted visible vein is gone.
- Microphlebectomy — As with laser ablation, the area is locally anesthetized. Next, Dr. Kapusta makes a tiny incision on the surface skin of the back of the hand. These incisions are so small (basically the size of a ballpoint pen tip, 2-3 mm) they do not require sutures to close. Through these incisions, Dr. Kapusta then inserts a small surgical hook. He grasps the unwanted vein and pulls out a section. Because the vein collapses, it can easily be drawn out through the tiny incision. This is repeated on remaining sections down the vein until it is completely removed.
Is there recovery after hand vein treatment?
After these treatments for hand veins, we will have you wear compression gloves for 12 hours. This helps the body tighten down the skin in the area and begin the process of scavenging the now-unused vein. You can return to normal activity, but you will have to wait a day for strenuous activity.
Will my hand veins reappear after treatment?
These are permanent treatments. The veins that are closed off will not once again begin handling blood. The body will scavenge and dispose of them. Obviously, in cases of microphlebectomy, the vein is physically removed, so it too is gone for good.
You can develop new bulging veins, but for most people these treatments dramatically improve the appearance of their hands for the duration.
How often do I need these treatments for my hand veins?
These are typically larger veins, so they may not always go away with just a single sclerotherapy session. Larger veins may need from one to three treatments. But once the veins are gone, there is no need for more sessions.
This contrasts with using dermal fillers on the hands to hide the veins. These cosmetic treatments are temporary, your results only lasting as long as the dermal filler lasts. This is usually from just 6-9 months in the hands. At that point, you need to return and have another injection session. This continues for the duration, which is tedious.
Our simple procedures at Vein Center Houston are a better solution to unsightly veins on the backs of your hands.