Varithena® FAQs - Varicose Veins Treament - Dallas, TX

Varicose Veins Treatment with Varithena FAQs

Varicose Veins Treatment with Varithena® – Frequently Asked Questions from Patients

1. What are varicose veins?
Varicose veins are enlarged, bulging veins, usually found in the legs that most often occur in the leg’s great saphenous vein (GSV) system. Varicose veins can cause uncomfortable symptoms such as swelling, achiness, throbbing, and itching. Common risk factors include family history, aging, being overweight or obese, and working at jobs requiring prolonged standing. Varicose veins often bulge above the surface of the skin, but they are not always visible.
2. How do varicose veins form?
Varicose veins occur when the tiny valves inside the veins become weaker, causing blood to back up and make the veins swell.

Varicose Healthy Veins Varithena FAQs

Tiny valves help the leg veins work against gravity to push blood back to the heart.

Varicose Weak Veins Varithena FAQs

But if valves weaken, blood can leak backwards and pool, resulting in varicose veins.

3. What is Varithena®?
Varithena (polidocanol injectable foam) is a prescription medicine used to treat varicose veins caused by problems with the great saphenous vein (GSV) and other related veins in the leg’s GSV system. Additionally, Varithena improves symptoms related to or caused by varicose veins, and the appearance of varicose veins.

Varithena is administered by the doctor into the malfunctioning veins. The minimally invasive, nonsurgical treatment doesn’t require incisions. The doctor usually numbs the injection site, but no additional anesthesia is required.

4. What are the results with Varithena?
In clinical trials, Varithena reduced patients’ varicose vein symptoms including heaviness, achiness, swelling, throbbing, and itching (HASTITM Symptoms). Varithena also improved vein appearance in assessments by both patients and doctors.
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5. How does Varithena work?
Your Precision VIR doctor administers Varithena through a catheter or by direct injection into your malfunctioning vein. The foam fills the desired section of the vein, and the diseased vein collapses. Blood flow shifts to healthier veins nearby.
6. What happens to Varithena after it’s injected?
The foam is deactivated when it comes in contact with blood.
7. How long does Varithena treatment take?
It usually takes less than an hour to administer Varithena, and you go home the same day.
8. Are there side effects to treatment with Varithena?
The most common side effect with Varithena is leg pain or discomfort. In the majority of cases, leg pain stops within one week. The other most common side effects are injection site bruising or pain, and potentially serious blood clots in the leg veins. Discoloration of the treated vein may occur. These are not all of the possible side effects of Varithena.  Rarely, Varithena causes a life-threatening allergic reaction. Tell your doctor about any side effect that bothers you or that does not go away.
9. How many treatments are required for Varithena?
You may see results with as little as one treatment, depending on the number and size of your varicose veins. Additional treatment may be necessary if the size and extent of the veins to be treated require more than the maximum dose of Varithena per session. Treatment sessions are separated by a minimum of 5 days.
10. What is the difference between Varithena and Foam Sclerotherapy?
It is the same type of treatment but utilizes a unique patented micro-foam medication. Secondly, Varithena is often performed for larger or deeper veins compared to standard sclerotherapy. Lastly, the difference between Varithena and typical foam sclerotherapy is that ultrasound is always utilized when administering this medication.

Other terms often used to describe Varithena treatment are “foam sclerotherapy,”  “endovenous chemical ablation,” or “ultrasound-guided sclerotherapy”. The “foam” refers to the appearance of the medication, which looks like foam shaving cream.

Varithena Varicose Vein Treatment

Recently additional research and testing of this method lead to the FDA approval for this particular form of polidocanol foam, marketed through Biocompatibles, Inc. Varithena offers a proprietary canister device that is used to create and deliver the foam medication. This device produces a cohesive low-nitrogen micro-foam with controlled density and bubble size, with unique oxygen to carbon dioxide gas mixture of 65% to 35%. This foam mixture helps to maximize the contact time between the vein wall and polidocanol chemical, therefore theoretically maximizing the effectiveness of the drug.

11. What imaging is utilized during this Varithena?
Unlike traditional sclerotherapy, foam sclerotherapy is performed utilizing ultrasound imaging. Foam medications have the unique property of being able to be directly visualized easily with an ultrasound machine. To assure precise and accurate injection of the medication locally into the abnormal vein, an ultrasound machine applied to the skin surface visualizes the vein during injection. Only a small amount of polidocanol chemical is injected into the lumen of the abnormal vein until it fills the vessel and then the injection is discontinued.
12. How soon can I get back to normal activities?
You may resume some activities the same day as treatment. You will need to keep your post-treatment bandages dry and in place for 48 hours and to wear compression stockings on your treated leg for 2 weeks. No heavy exercise is recommended during the first week after treatment. For a month, you should walk at least 10 minutes a day and avoid long periods of inactivity.
13. How long do I have to wear my compression stockings after the procedure?
Compression stockings should be worn on the treated leg continuously for 2 weeks (14 days total) after treatment. Your doctor will recommend either thigh-high or knee-high stockings, depending on the location of the treated veins.
14. Do I need to wear my compression stockings while I shower or bathe?
Your doctor will apply bandages and a compression stocking to the treated area, which should remain dry. You should not shower or bathe during the first 48 hours after treatment. After the initial 48-hour time period, your compression stockings must be worn day and night, including in the bath or shower, for the next 12 days. Replace the wet stocking with a dry one immediately after bathing or showering.
15. Is Varithena covered by my insurance carrier?
Insurance carriers may cover varicose vein treatment.  Precision VIR will contact your insurance provider to determine if you are eligible for treatment. Coverage may depend on the severity of your varicose veins and your symptoms.
16. Am I a candidate for Varithena?

Varithena can be safe for most patients. Patients who are allergic to polidocanol or have blood clots in their veins are not candidates for Varithena. Varithena will not be administered during pregnancy. If you have any of the following conditions, you may not be a suitable candidate for Varithena:

  • A history of blood clots in the veins or the lungs
  • Peripheral arterial disease
  • A history of major surgery in the past 3 months
  • Reduced mobility
  • A history of a prolonged hospitalization in the past 1 year.

Request an Appointment

We encourage you to schedule a consultation with Precision VIR. One of our vein care specialists will advise on whether or not you’re an ideal candidate for Varithena, as well as create a custom treatment plan. Call the office today at 214-382-3200 or complete the form below.

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Varithena® is a registered trademark of Provensis Ltd, a BTG International group company.

Precision VIR serves the DFW area including Dallas, Fort Worth, Carrollton, Richardson, Garland, Mesquite, Highland Park, University Park, Park Cities, Allen, Plano, Frisco, McKinney, Arlington, Irving, Grand Prairie, Flower Mound Denton, Lewisville and all of North Texas.

This information is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Prior to starting any new treatment or questions regarding a medical condition, always seek the advice of your doctor or other qualified health provider.