Foam Sclerotherapy

How does foam sclerotherapy work?

Foaming may be used instead of surgery to treat certain cases of varicose veins, provided that they are not too large or extensive. The aim is to cause inflammation of the vein walls so that they empty of blood, shrivel up and become less visible and uncomfortable. This process usually takes several weeks and the treated area often looks worse immediately after treatment, before it begins to look better. Foam sclerotherapy is performed lying on a couch in the treatment room. A small amount of local anaesthetic is injected into the skin, and once numbed, a needle is placed into the main vein feeding the varicose veins. The leg is then raised to empty all the veins, and the foam injected into the vein. The foam rapidly spreads along the vein and is followed using a scanning machine. When it reaches the upper end of the vein being treated (in the groin or behind the knee) firm pressure is applied to the vein to flatten it. More foam is then massaged back into the varicose veins. The leg is then bandaged. Many patients require only one treatment, although up to a third may need two or three.

For more details, please go to the information sheet page.