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Echosclerotherapy

Echosclerotherapy

Some varicose veins or veins that “feed” spider and varicose veins are not visible on the skin’s surface. These problem veins are often the cause of venous ulcers, skin breakdown and wounds. For patients with these types of veins, echosclerotherapy may be a suitable treatment option. Contact us at the Vein Care Center, serving patients in Lima, Celina and the surrounding areas of Auglaize County, OH, to schedule your free screening or consultation with board-certified and aesthetic-laser-certified family physician, D. Manu B. Aggarwal, MHSA, MD.

What is Echosclerotherapy?

Echosclerotherapy is ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy. Since some problem veins are not visible on the skin’s surface, this procedure uses advanced ultrasound technology to locate and map out these veins so they can be accurately identified and treated. The area will be visualized, and an FDA-approved sclerosant will be injected into the vein. While various medications can be used for this treatment, we only use FDA-approved substances that are safe for the body. The sclerosant used for your procedure will either be Polidocanol or Sotradecol, two detergents that work by damaging the proteins in the wall of the vessel, causing the vein to collapse and close. Sometimes these two are mixed with air and injected into the vein. This is considered off-label use. Immediately following the injection, in some instances, Dr. Aggarwal will also inject a numbing solution surrounding the area of treatment to direct the medication to the appropriate site.

What Happens During Echosclerotherapy Treatment?

Dr. Aggarwal begins echosclerotherapy by using an ultrasound to map out the problem veins. Once she has determined which veins to target, she will inject the chosen solution into the abnormal veins. During the process, Dr. Aggarwal will monitor the procedure on an ultrasound screen to ensure accurate placement of the needle into the vein. The solution will destroy the inner lining of the vein, causing it to seal shut and gradually disappear. Throughout the procedure, you will be awake and lying comfortably, and you will also be able to watch the process take place on the monitor.

What Should I Expect After Treatment?

Immediately following the injection, you may experience slight discomfort along the course of the vein, though the numbing solution will help to alleviate this. Since echosclerotherapy is minimally invasive, most patients feel comfortable returning to work or resuming their daily routine immediately after treatment. In fact, we usually encourage our patients to continue with regular activity, as this will promote healthy circulation and accelerate the healing process. The area may be slightly tender, however, so it is best to avoid strenuous tasks or heavy exercise for the week following your procedure to minimize risk and ensure optimal results. You may also need to wear compression garments for a few days or weeks following treatment.

Benefits of Echosclerotherapy

Ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy is one of the most advanced procedures available at the Vein Care Center. Some of the benefits of this method include:

  • Extremely accurate treatment and results
  • Minimal discomfort and few side effects
  • Non-surgical and minimally invasive
  • No incisions or downtime required
  • Quick, convenient procedure time
  • Reduced risk of cell or tissue damage
  • Long-lasting and effective results

Am I a Good Candidate for Echosclerotherapy?

Echosclerotherapy is an ideal treatment option for those with larger veins that are not visible through the skin or are too twisted to be corrected through other methods. If you have noticed skin changes due to venous ulcers, this procedure may also be a suitable option for you. For those with more complex kinds of venous disorders or conditions, echosclerotherapy may be performed in conjunction with other methods, such as foam injections, to produce a more thorough result.

During your consultation, the Vein Care Center team will examine your health and review your medical history to determine whether this treatment is right for you. Once your evaluation is complete, we will advise you of the most appropriate method to address and manage your concerns. Patients with a history of migraine headaches, COPD or asthma, and those with a condition called patent foramen ovale might not be suitable candidates for echosclerotherapy. If there are notable contraindications, our vein specialists will discuss alternative vein treatments with you to ensure your issue is addressed correctly and effectively.Echosclerotherapy

What is Foam Sclerotherapy?

Foam injection sclerotherapy involves injecting problem veins with a foam sclerosant, rather than a liquid solution. This procedure is more suitable for patients with larger spider, varicose or perforator veins that require more complex treatment. Though Varithena is the only FDA-approved foam sclerosant, various medications can be used to supplement echosclerotherapy. However, it is important to understand that once the solutions are mixed with air to create a foam, it is considered off-label use, meaning this may not be FDA-approved (except for Varithena).

At the Vein Care Center, we combine foam injections with ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy several times a week for patients with larger problem veins. Compared to liquid sclerosants which flow through the vein, the foam works more thoroughly by coating the inside of the vein in its entirety, causing it to collapse and close. Ultimately, since the agent is mixed with air, foam echosclerotherapy is beneficial because it uses less medication yet still creates a more effective result.

Is Foam Echosclerotherapy Safe?

The use of foam injections generally has a long track record of safety. It has proven to be an excellent solution for many patients at our clinic. However, one of the rare risk factors of foam sclerotherapy (or echosclerotherapy) is neurological symptoms, including visual changes, headaches, vomiting, numbness or tingling. In the rare case that these complications occur, these side effects are only temporary and have never shown to be permanent in literature or at our practice. You will be monitored for these symptoms immediately after the procedure is complete. It is important to note that we have only seen these side effects develop a handful of times in the 12 years we have practiced.

What is a Venous Ulcer?

Echosclerotherapy is often the treatment of choice for venous ulcers. Also called stasis leg ulcers, venous ulcers are shallow wounds that are difficult to heal, most commonly located on the side of the lower leg, above the ankle and below the calf. Venous ulcers form when the veins fail to function correctly, allowing the blood to collect and pool in the lower extremities instead of flowing back to the heart. This process creates a bruise-like effect that occurs from within the skin and manifests on the outside.

Why Should I Seek Treatment for Venous Ulcers?

Venous ulcers usually begin with visible or physical symptoms; if you notice that an area of your skin has turned dark red or become dry, thick or itchy, you may be developing a venous ulcer that requires treatment. Often, these skin changes begin with redness, which many providers treat with steroids or other medications without determining the underlying cause. In fact, long-term use of steroids can thin the skin and cause an open wound to occur sooner. If the issue is left improperly diagnosed, ulcers can form and create an open wound(s) that is highly susceptible to infection.

At the Vein Care Center, we have seen patients come in with ulcers over three years old, which can significantly harm your overall health. In fact, the resulting pain can be emotionally and physically debilitating for some patients, affecting their daily routine and ability to complete regular activities. If you have an ulcer or have noticed the condition beginning to develop, early treatment is crucial for addressing the issue. If the underlying venous disease is not identified and treated promptly, the recurrence rate not only increases but wound care also becomes unnecessarily prolonged and more complicated. Undergoing an early vein examination is vital, as this can prevent the ulcer from worsening and help to accelerate the healing process.

Why Choose the Vein Care Center?

At the Vein Care Center, we are committed to the safety, satisfaction and long-term health of our patients. We received our Vascular Testing Accreditation in 2007 and our Vein Center Accreditation in 2015. For over a decade, we have been serving patients around Lima, Celina and the surrounding counties, treating all kinds of vein concerns and conditions. Led by vein expert and board-certified physician Dr. Manu B. Aggarwal, our specialists are passionate about restoring your vein health and preventing venous issues from developing in the future.

Schedule an Examination Today

There is a significant risk in delaying treatment for venous issues and disorders. A vein examination is of the utmost importance if you are experiencing problems with your vein health. Leaving problems like venous ulcers untreated can result in more damage to your emotional and physical wellbeing. At the Vein Care Center, Dr. Aggarwal draws on cutting-edge diagnostic techniques to accurately identify and address venous conditions. Depending on your unique needs and goals, she will tailor your treatment to ensure personalized and thorough results. Echosclerotherapy is an excellent, highly developed procedure that can help restore and secure your vein health. If you are concerned about your venous health or would like to know more about this treatment, contact our clinic today at 419-227-4472 to schedule your screening.

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