Medical Superglue and Sclerotherapy for Varicose Veins: What’s Injected into the Vein?

May 12, 2022
Enquire NOW
May 12, 2022 The Vein Institute

If you’re planning on getting your varicose veins treated, it’s only natural to be curious about the procedures. Especially those involving varicose vein injections. 

So, to find out about what will be going into your body during sclerotherapy or a medical superglue procedure, read on.

Medical Superglue

Medical superglue is the most recent addition to the varicose vein treatment arsenal, having been introduced around 50 years back. There are currently 3 types of medical ‘glue’ widely used by specialists, including VenaSeal, VenaBlock, and VeinOFF. 

VeinOFF 

We use this medical-grade polymer to treat small, uncomplicated varicose veins. Your doctor will inject a small amount of the polymer into the problem vein via a needle. Afterwards, they will apply pressure to and around the injection site for 2-3 minutes to ensure complete closure. 

The polymer works by agitating the vein walls, causing them to inflame. The inflammation, in turn, blocks off blood flow into the varicose vein. 

VenaBlock

VenaBlock, on the other hand, is a true-to-form adhesive. We use it in a couple of varicose vein injection procedures, namely to treat:

  • Varicose perforator veins, which let blood flow from surface veins to deep veins
  • And varicose saphenous veins, which are deep veins responsible for running blood from your ankle back to your heart.

In perforator vein procedures, we inject a small amount (0.1-0.2 ml) of the adhesive through a needle into the perforator vein while applying pressure to seal it from the surface vein. 

As saphenous veins are larger, we use a catheter and inject a little more VenaBlock.

VenaSeal

VenaSeal is also a medical-grade adhesive. It is a cyanoacrylate glue doctors commonly use to seal wounds and surgical incisions. Now, specialists like us use it in varicose vein injections. Specifically, to treat varicose saphenous veins. We inject the substance through a catheter directly into the point where varicose vein meets healthy vein and apply pressure, shutting off blood flow.

Before choosing any superglue procedure, we first need to make you’re not allergic to the glue. Because while the risk of getting a reaction is small, it can prove dangerous.

Sclerotherapy

Sclerotherapy has been around for over 150 years. It’s a minimally invasive procedure that, like VeinOFF, is used to treat small varicose veins. And as with medical superglue, we use a couple of different substances and methods.

Sodium tetradecyl sulphate

Sodium tetradecyl sulphate is a white, waxy substance primarily made of salt (thus the name). It encourages the formation of scar tissue at the varicose vein injection site which then eventually resolves. 

Aethoxysklerol 

Aethoxysklerol, on the other hand, is a sterile solution that we inject into a varicose vein to break up its lining.

In both sclerotherapy procedures, we inject around 0.1-0.4 ml of the substance at 2-3 cm intervals using a fine needle. But with foam sclerotherapy, the process is a little different.

Foam sclerotherapy

During a foam sclerotherapy procedure, we mix the sclerosant with  C02. The process creates a foamy substance that can cover a wider area, allowing us to inject it into larger varicose veins.

As with medical superglue treatments, these procedures seal the problem vein, causing it to harden, heal, and get absorbed by the body. 

In all medical superglue and sclerotherapy procedures, we use ultrasound technology to guide injections and ensure pinpoint precision. And for maximum comfort, we can also inject a small amount of local anaesthetic (the amount varies depending on the size of your problem vein).

At the end of the day, our specialists will make sure you receive a consultation and a treatment plan tailored to your needs.

So if you have any questions or concerns about varicose vein injections, the substances we use, or the procedures we use them in, don’t hesitate to let us know.