Varicose veins are a common disease

Here you will find important studies and guidelines on the topic

9. February 2015

Sclerotherapy is the most cost-effective treatment for varicose veins

Worldwide, surgical stripping is still the most common procedure used in the treatment of trunk varicose veins, although it can be associated with nerve damage, scarring, and a prolonged recovery phase. New minimally invasive techniques such as endovenous laser therapy, radiofrequency ablation, and foam sclerotherapy are increasingly being used as alternative methods. But which modes of treatment are clinically effective and cost-effective?

The systematic review of published clinical trials showed that the clinical outcomes were similar for all the methods investigated. In addition, there were no significant differences in terms of side effects and complications. In summary, it can be said that all methods are equally effective and safe. Nor were there any significant differences in the recurrence rates. Costs are therefore the deciding factor. Foam sclerotherapy is clearly the most low-cost treatment, while laser therapy and radiofrequency ablation are more expensive than stripping. Foam sclerotherapy is therefore rated as the most cost-effective of all the treatment options.

Carroll C et al. Systematic review, network meta-analysis and exploratory cost-effectiveness model of randomized trials of minimally invasive techniques versus surgery for varicose veins. Br J Surg 2014;101(9):1040-1052

Author: mwo