Foam Sclerotherapy In Los Angeles
Vein Treatment for Varicose Veins
Foam sclerotherapy is an available varicose veins treatment in Los Angeles that is performed by Dr. Michael Lalezarian, a board-certified vascular & interventional radiologist. Foam sclerotherapy is an injectable solution consisting of polidocanol foam that can be used to treat varicose veins, spider veins, and reticular veins. Learn about foam sclerotherapy in this quick overview from the Vein Specialists at ProVascularMD.
Dr. Michael Lalezarian
Dr. Michael Lalezarian is a double-board certified Vascular Interventional Radiologist specializing in minimally invasive vein treatments, including foam sclerotherapy. He is a committed partner in the battle against the devastating consequences of venous insufficiency.
“I was referred to Dr. Lalezarian from my orthopedic surgeon for varicose vein treatment options. From the second I walked into the office, I was at ease and felt very welcomed from Kimberly and the staff. Upon meeting the doctor, he was so kind and fully explained my options after the initial ultrasound on both legs. I decided to go with the sclerotherapy and am so happy that I did. The procedures were quick and virtually painless but the results are life changing for me. The pain suffered for so many years and countless sleepless nights are a thing of the past.”
Vickie W, March 2022
What is Foam Sclerotherapy?
Foam sclerotherapy is an injectable solution consisting of polidocanol foam. Foam sclerotherapy can be used to treat varicose veins, spider veins, and reticular veins, but the focus of this page is on varicose veins. Foam treatment for varicose veins is typically done by a vein specialist using ultrasound guidance, which is why foam sclerotherapy is often referred to as ultrasound guided foam sclerotherapy, or UGFS for short.
Foam sclerosant was approved for use by the FDA in 2013, and since its approval, sclerotherapy with foam has been commonly used to treat vein disease. UGFS can be used to treat both the cosmetic appearance of varicose veins as well as the persistent symptoms of vein disease, including swelling, pain, aching, throbbing, heaviness, and itching.
How Does Foam Sclerotherapy Work?
Because of its foam-based delivery mechanism, foam sclerotherapy can be used to treat nearly every case of varicose veins, and it has the unique advantage of being able to treat varicose veins that are exceptionally large, lie deep below the surface of the skin, and are highly branched or twisted [1, 2]. Other varicose vein treatments, including thermal ablation and vein glue are not as effective in these scenarios.
Foam Sclerotherapy Procedure: What To Expect
Foam Sclerotherapy Recovery
Foam Sclerotherapy Success Rate
There have been at least a handful of studies on the durability of foam sclerotherapy. In one study comparing vein closure rates with laser ablation, conventional surgery, and foam sclerotherapy, vein closure rates at one year post treatment were 88.5% for endovenous laser ablation, 88.2% for conventional surgery, and 72.2% for foam sclerotherapy . This study suggested that foam sclerotherapy wouldn’t be as durable as other treatments. However, in another study, 90% of great saphenous veins remained close after two sessions of foam sclerotherapy over an average 3.25 years of follow-up , suggesting that foam sclerotherapy is just as good if not better than alternatives. It’s also interesting to note that varicose vein recurrence does not always cause symptoms. One study found that 70% of patients did not experience clinical vein symptoms again even after a treated vein reopened .
Looking at all of the evidence, we think it’s fair to say that treatment efficacy is approximately equal between the different types of vein treatment, both in terms of symptom relief and durability.
Foam Sclerotherapy Complications and Side Effects
Most foam sclerotherapy complications and side effects are temporary and resolve within a few months after the procedure. Following foam sclerotherapy, patients may experience these side effects:
- Mild pain and inflammation at the injection site
- Skin hyperpigmentation
- Ulceration (rare)
- Deep vein thrombosis (rare)
- An adverse reaction to the sclerosant (rare)
Is Foam Sclerotherapy Right For Me?
Get in touch with us at ProVascularMD to learn more about varicose veins, foam sclerotherapy, and your options.
Stages of Venous Insufficiency
Venous Leg Ulcer Treatment
Vascular Specialist in Los Angeles
Learn more about Los Angeles Vascular Specialist Dr. Michael Lalezarian.
 Scovell, S. Liquid, foam, and glue sclerotherapy techniques for the treatment of lower extremity veins. UpToDate. Accessed April 2020.
 Morrison, N., Gibson, K., Vasquez, M., Weiss, R., Cher, D., Madsen, M., & Jones, A. (2017). VeClose trial 12-month outcomes of cyanoacrylate closure versus radiofrequency ablation for incompetent great saphenous veins. Journal of Vascular Surgery: Venous and Lymphatic Disorders, 5(3), 321–330.
 Biemans AA, Kockaert M, Akkersdijk GP, van den Bos RR, de Maeseneer MG, Cuypers P, Stijnen T, Neumann MH, Nijsten T. Comparing endovenous laser ablation, foam sclerotherapy, and conventional surgery for great saphenous varicose veins. J Vasc Surg. 2013 Sep;58(3):727-734.e1. Epub 2013 Jun 13.
 Coleridge Smith, P. (2009). Sclerotherapy and foam sclerotherapy for varicose veins. Phlebology, 24(6), 260–269.
 Chen CH, Chiu CS, Yang CH. Ultrasound-guided foam sclerotherapy for treating incompetent great saphenous veins–results of 5 years of analysis and morphologic evolvement study. Dermatologic Surg., June;38(6):851. Epub 2012 Apr 27.
 Chapman-Smith, P., & Browne, A. (2009). Prospective five-year study of ultrasound-guided foam sclerotherapy in the treatment of great saphenous vein reflux. Phlebology, 24(4), 183–188.
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