Ultrasound guided sclerotherapy, also known as echosclerotherapy, is used to treat veins that are difficult to see and inject. With the assistance of state-of-the-art ultrasound technology, a needle is precisely and accurately inserted into the underlying vein, and the sclerosing agent is injected into the vein. By using an ultrasound machine, deeper veins are easier to visualize, dramatically lowering the need for surgery. This technique can replace surgery and is especially useful for veins that recur after surgery.
The procedure begins with a leg examination while the patient is standing. Using ultrasound, the physician and ultrasound technician identify the anatomy and competency of the veins. Once the veins are mapped out, the patient reclines comfortably on the examining table. A small amount of local anesthetic is infiltrated under the skin and then a plastic coated needle (catheter) is positioned in the vein. With the catheter in place, a medication (sclerosant), which closes the insufficient vein, will be carefully injected and monitored on the ultrasound screen.