Ultrasound-Guided Sclerotherapy (UGS)


UGS has been in use for some 25 years. UGS is used to block off smaller diameter saphenous veins or large tributaries by injection using ultrasound to guide the needle to the vein. Our results published in the European Journal of Vascular Surgery show a low risk of complications and good results but with a need to repeat treatment at a later date in some patients. Success rates for UGS compare favourably to published results for surgery. The two sclerosants used are Aethoxysklerol (polidocanol) or Fibrovein (sodium tetradecyl sulphate - STS). Both are detergents and act by washing away the lining of the vein allowing the two walls to stick together.

Worldwide the trend in recent years has been to use sclerosant made up as foam. However, it is now known that this can lead to bubbles passing to the brain and there is a small number of reported strokes. Accordingly, this practice has reverted to liquid sclerotherapy. However this may lead to a need for greater numbers of treatment sessions.

What are the advantages and disadvantages for UGS?



What should you do before UGS?

Advice will have been given about the type and use of stockings.

What happens during UGS?

What should you do after UGS?

What can you expect following UGS?

The following features are expected. They are not a cause for concern although they should be reported at review:

What are the possible complications from UGS?

Complications can occur even with perfect technique.

Please Note

Your treatment will not be recognized by Medicare if veins are less than 2.5mm in diameter. Even if your treatment is recognized by Medicare, they have restrictions on the item number used for Sclerotherapy (item 32500). A maximum of 6 treatments in a 12 month period is permitted by Medicare. You may require more treatment sessions but there will be no further rebate from Medicare if within the 12 month cycle. Please note if you have had Endovenous Laser Ablation and/or Ultrasound Guided Sclerotherapy the restriction also applies.

We advise you contact Medicare to enquire further - for Medicare General Patient Enquiries phone 132 011

-- Subject to change --