Foam Sclerotherapy

Foam Sclerotherapy

Injection Sclerotherapy, more simply known as Sclerotherapy, is a treatment used in disorders of the veins, most commonly to remove varicose veins in the legs

There are two main variations of Sclerotherapy; Foam Sclerotherapy for varicose veins and Microsclerotherapy for spider veins. The treatment works in similar ways, although there are some small differences

UK Vein Clinic - Foam Sclerotherapy

What is Foam Sclerotherapy?

Foam Sclerotherapy treatment is reserved mostly for larger varicose veins. It involves injecting a harmless foam solution into the varicose vein, blocking off blood flow to the vein and collapsing it. This allows the vein to be naturally absorbed into the body, effectively removing it. Microsclerotherapy is a similar treatment that is used in the treatment of smaller spider veins, using a simple liquid saline solution rather than foam

Foam Sclerotherapy may be used alongside other treatments. For example, if you are having Radiofrequency Ablation, your clinician may use Foam Sclerotherapy to treat any remaining veins

The Foam Sclerotherapy procedure

Foam Sclerotherapy is a simple and minimally invasive procedure. How long the Sclerotherapy procedure takes is usually dependent on the individual patient, but is approximately 30 mins. As the procedure is minimally invasive and doesn’t damage any surrounding tissue, no stay is required and the recovery time is relatively short

When you come in for your treatment, we advise you to wear comfortable, unrestrictive clothing such as jogging bottoms or a loose skirt to avoid irritating the treated area. We also advise that you have had at least a small meal before the procedure in order to keep your energy level up

Your clinician will use an anaesthetic in order to minimise your discomfort while performing the procedure. As the procedure is performed under a local anaesthetic, no stay is required - you will be able to walk in-and-out of the clinic on the same day

Ultrasound-guided Foam Sclerotherapy

Ultrasound-guided Foam Sclerotherapy for varicose veins has become standard practice. The ultrasound scan allows your specialist to see below the superficial or cosmetic veins to ensure that there is no deeper issue that could alter treatment. Similarly, ultrasound-guided Sclerotherapy is likely to provide your specialist with a better estimation of success, as well as allowing them to identify the root causes of the varicose veins below the surface

How long after Foam Sclerotherapy will I see results?

A common question is, “Does Foam Sclerotherapy really work?” With between 50% and 80% of veins successfully removed each session, the simple answer is: absolutely! After your Foam Sclerotherapy treatment, your body will immediately start reabsorbing the affected varicose veins, although it could take up to 3 months for them to disappear entirely. The results of Sclerotherapy treatment are permanent, although it is possible for new varicose veins to develop in the future

What to expect after Foam Sclerotherapy

While Foam Sclerotherapy is a minimally invasive procedure, there is a small amount of aftercare to maintain after your treatment. Foam Sclerotherapy recovery times are relatively short, and you may be asked to wear compression stockings for up to two weeks following treatment for larger varicose veins. For smaller varicose veins, your specialist may apply a light dressing that can be removed overnight

How much does Foam Sclerotherapy cost?

A detailed breakdown of our varicose vein treatment prices can be found here. Foam Sclerotherapy packages begin at £1,945 and include the initial Foam Sclerotherapy treatment, plus up to 2 extra sessions to clear up any residual veins (please note that this does not include an initial examination)

Where can I get Foam Sclerotherapy?

The UK Vein Clinic has clinics in Harley Street, London and Pall Mall, Manchester. Both clinics are easily accessible by foot, car and public transport. More information on our clinics can be found here

Frequently Asked Questions

Can I exercise after Foam Sclerotherapy?

We recommend walking as soon as possible after Sclerotherapy, as this will help your blood flow return to normal. Returning to more strenuous activities, such as running, cycling, swimming or weight lifting, should be avoided until your recovery is complete

When can I start tanning after Foam Sclerotherapy?

You should avoid tanning (either sunbathing or sunbeds) for four weeks; if exposed to too much direct sunlight, the solution may stain the skin

Is flying after Foam Sclerotherapy safe?

We would advise against flying immediately after Sclerotherapy and recommend avoiding long-haul flights for 6 weeks following the procedure. If you're planning on travelling, please consult with your specialist

Am I able to take a bath or go swimming after Foam Sclerotherapy?

You shouldn’t have a hot bath for 24 hours after your treatment, and swimming in chlorinated pools should be avoided for 48 hours. However, taking a regular shower is completely fine

Can you get Foam Sclerotherapy on the NHS?

It is very unlikely that you will be able to claim Sclerotherapy treatments on the NHS, as it is often considered a cosmetic treatment. In very severe cases it may be covered if the varicose veins are causing a lot of pain or putting you at risk of further complications. But for most people this is not the case, and the NHS is unlikely to cover treatment. You can read more about varicose vein treatment on the NHS on our Blog here

How painful is Foam Sclerotherapy?

It’s no more painful than a vaccination or similar injection. Most people feel nothing more than a slight pinch

Can I get Foam Sclerotherapy during pregnancy?

You would be able to undergo the initial consultation and scan, although we recommend waiting until after your pregnancy to undertake the procedure

Are there any creams or natural alternatives?

There are no effective home remedies for treating varicose veins. Some less trustworthy sources on the internet may suggest trying things such as apple cider vinegar, horse chestnut, vitamin C or coconut oil, but unfortunately none of these will actually make varicose veins go away. Some creams may temporarily mask the veins, but once the effect wears off the damaged veins will still be visible

Is Foam Sclerotherapy safe?

Thanks to our non-invasive treatments, there is minimal risk of postoperative pain or complications. However, as with any medical procedures there is a slight chance of minor adverse effects. These can include bruising, redness and tenderness in the treated area and some patients might experience numbness

Where to find us

We're pleased to be able to provide our world-class varicose vein treatment in a variety of places throughout the United Kingdom. Learn more about your treatment options, including endovenous radio-frequency ablation (EVRF) and foam sclerotherapy, at the clinic closest to you


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