What are Thread Veins?

Thread veins are harmless, but they can cause psychological distress, especially when the veins appear on an area of the legs that are particularly exposed. This may lead the individual to not wear shorts or skirts or expose their legs or feet at all in public. Thread veins tend to appear just underneath the surface of skin and can be red, blue or purple in colour and are usually up to 1-2mm in diameter. They are not a serious medical issue, but can sometimes cause aches and pains. A number of factors can contribute to thread veins, including weight gain, standing for long periods of time and the hormonal changes that often occur in pregnancy.

How it Works

Although thread veins are most common on the face and legs, we only use sclerotherapy to treat thread veins on the legs due to the minimal risk of scarring. Thread veins are not to be confused with varicose veins.

During sclerotherapy, a chemical solution (called a sclerosing agent) is injected into the veins at various points along them. This solution irritates the lining of the veins, and this, along with the compression that occurs after treatment, induces vein collapse. Over time, the body absorbs the veins, significantly improving the appearance of treated area, resulting in legs that are free of unsightly veiny areas and more youthful in appearance. Because treatment is painless, no anaesthetic is required and downtime is minimal. Once injected, it is important that the veins remain collapsed. The nurse practitioner will also recommend that you wear compression stockings following treatment to promote healing. These compression stockings should be worn day and night for 3 days and then just during the day for 3 days.


Results will typically be seen within a few weeks of the first treatment. Although veins will fade after one treatment, you may need a course of two to four treatments spaced four to six weeks apart. Some patients will require more treatments and some less.

Sclerotherapy is a safe and effective therapy suitable for treating thread veins on the legs. For more information about sclerotherapy and the other treatments we provide for treating thread veins, contact Hilton Skin & Body Clinics today.