Ultrasound Guided Sclerotherapy
Sometimes referred to as foam sclerotherapy, ultrasound guided sclerotherapy is a highly-specialized means of treating varicose veins hidden beneath the skin. The procedure involves injecting a sclerosant agent into the diseased veins using ultrasound to guide the injection. The agent causes the vein to collapse and disappear.
Foam Sclerotherapy Treatment in Northeast Virginia
Ultrasound Guided Sclerotherapy (UGS) is a simple procedure that has many applications in the treatment of venous insufficiency. Virginia Vein Care doctors are experts and perform this non-surgical and minimally invasive procedure using the latest technology and techniques.
What Is Ultrasound Guided Sclerotherapy?
Ultrasound guided sclerotherapy is a non-surgical, minimally invasive procedure that involves injecting medication into selected enlarged blood vessels using ultrasound guidance. The medication injected is known as sclerosant.
The most commonly used sclerosant medication is called polidocanol (Asclera™). It is the most commonly used sclerosant in the world and has been extensively used for over 50 years. The sclerosant causes the vein wall to collapse and blood is immediately rerouted through other veins. Eventually, the body absorbs the problem veins, and they are no longer visible.
Frequently, an emulsified form of the sclerosant is injected in a process known as ultrasound guided foam sclerotherapy. The use of foam sclerotherapy is an ingenious, time-tested and safe way to effectively close larger abnormal veins. Foam sclerosant looks something like shaving cream, and it remains inside the lining of the blood vessel longer than a liquid sclerosant does.
At Virginia Vein Care, we use a combination of sclerotherapy techniques to provide excellent clinical and cosmetic relief from abnormal and unsightly veins, regardless of their configuration or appearance.
Benefits of Varithena™ Foam Sclerotherapy
There are many benefits to this procedure, including fast relief from symptoms and long-lasting results. Ultrasound guided sclerotherapy is a truly minimally invasive procedure and is an invaluable part of our entirely minimally invasive approach to treating venous insufficiency.
Virginia Vein Care also utilizes Varithena™, a recently FDA-approved form of injectable foam sclerosant. Varithena is minimally invasive, non-surgical and a valuable adjunct in the treatment of venous insufficiency. If appropriate, your physician at Virginia Vein Care will discuss this form of sclerotherapy as part of your treatment plan.
Significantly, ultrasound guided sclerotherapy allows your phlebologist to observe the effect of each injection of the sclerosant, at the same time ensuring the safety of all nearby structures.
What to Expect During Ultrasound Guided Sclerotherapy Treatment
No anesthesia or special preparation is required before your ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy treatment. A detailed examination of your leg veins will be performed first using duplex ultrasound to help identify the root cause of the varicose vein.
While observing the intended vein under ultrasound guidance, your physician will gently anesthetize the area before confirming placement of a small needle into the lumen of the vein. The injected sclerosant is then able to be tracked and directed during the procedure. The procedure is painless and takes no longer than five or ten minutes.
The treated blood vessel will collapse and slowly be reabsorbed into your body.
The doctor will massage the area after injecting the vein, and you will be asked to wear a compression hose and resume normal activities immediately following the procedure.
How to Prepare for Ultrasound Guided Sclerotherapy
- Do not apply moisturizer on the day of treatment
- Do not shave your legs prior to treatment
- Do not undergo treatment if you plan on traveling overseas within 3 weeks of the procedure
- Avoid treatment for at least 2 weeks if you have just come back from overseas travel
- Do not stop taking medications before treatment unless advised by your physician
- Those who smoke should consider stopping before treatment
- Wear slacks or loose clothing to your appointment and make sure you have a pair of comfortable walking shoes
After Your Foam Sclerotherapy Treatment
There are several important steps to take after your ultrasound guided sclerotherapy procedure to ensure its effectiveness.
- Go walking for 20 to 30 minutes prior to driving home.
- Wear your compression stockings overnight for your first night.
- After your first night, wear your sticking for 14 days during the daytime, removing them to shower and sleep.
- Walk for 30 minutes each day.
- You can return to your normal routine, but do not stand still for long stretches of time.
- Avoid flights of more than 4 hours for 3 to 4 weeks after your treatment.
How Long Does an Ultrasound Guided Sclerotherapy Treatment Take?
We allow approximately 30 minutes for the entire office visit, although sometimes it only takes a few minutes. After the foam sclerotherapy procedure, patients will need to wear graduated compression stockings and are encouraged to walk to promote blood flow.
Is Sclerotherapy Right for Me?
Ultrasound guided sclerotherapy is one of many treatments for varicose veins. Discuss your unique situation with our vascular specialists to see which treatments are right for you.
The treatment may cause temporary bruising, redness or darkened skin. Advise your physician if you experience any of these issues.
Blood clots, air bubbles, or an allergic reaction are possible rare complications but are exceedingly uncommon. Sclerotherapy is a widely used, safe procedure that requires no anesthesia and is far less invasive than either surgery or phlebectomy.
Virginia Vein Care: Accredited & Experienced
At Virginia Vein Care we have among the most extensive experiences with ultrasound guided sclerotherapy. If you have legs that ache, swell, burn or cramp during the night, speak to the vascular experts at Virginia Vein Care at any of our offices in McLean, Virginia; or Purcellville, Virginia;