VENASEAL

venaseal-logo

IS PERFORMED BY DR. ARTWOHL AT THE ALASKA VEIN CLINIC

The Venaseal™  is a new way of closing the main vein in the leg that causes varicose veins that has just been approved by the FDA for use in the United States. It is the same principle as the ClosureFast system or the Laser system, except that instead of using heat energy to seal the vein, it uses a glue.

There are several advantages of the Venaseal system, which include:

1.   only one small injection of local anesthetic is needed.  (With the ClosureFast and laser procedures, multiple injections are needed.)

2.  patients do not need to wear support stockings afterwards.

3.  no immediate post-op restrictions on activities.

However there are also disadvantages to the Venaseal system:

1.  there is not as much long-term experience using this system.  It has only been available for commercial in the U.S. for less than one year.  

2.  the system is expensive and is not currently covered by medical insurance. It is therefore only available to those patients who are paying the for the procedure themselves.  

3.  Some people don’t like the idea of a “glue” being injected directly into their veins.  The glue used in the system, n-butyl-2-cyanoacrylate, is a commonly used medical adhesive that is used in various other applications and is considered safe.  It is often used to seal off other abnormal vessels, like arteriovenous malformations and esophageal varices.   It is also the glue that is used in some skin glues to seal wounds closed.  However, the glue will remain in your body permanently and patients who have Venaseal should consider themselves as having a permanent implant.

If you think you may be interested in the Venaseal system, Dr. Artwohl will happy to discuss this procedure with you.

 


Dr. Artwohl performs all procedures at the Alaska Vein Clinic.

Here are the differences between Venaseal and ClosureFast:

Venaseal

  • • Not covered by insurance.1
  • • Only one small injection of local anesthetic.2
  • • Stockings not needed after procedure.3
  • • No immediate restrictions on activities.
  • • Glue left permanently in vein to keep vein sealed.4
  • • Little to no discomfort after procedure.

ClosureFast

  • • Covered by insurance.1
  • • Several needle sticks to deliver anesthetic solution.2
  • • Stockings required for two weeks after procedure.3
  • • Light activity two weeks after procedure.
  • • No materials left in vein, vein is sealed by heat and scars down.4
  • • Little to no discomfort after procedure.5

Comments

  • 1Venaseal is approved by the FDA, but since it has only been available in the United States for a short time, there is no CPT code (procedure codes used by insurance companies to establish price) insurance companies will not reimburse for this procedure.  A CPT code is expected in the next year or so.
  • 2Because only a small amount of anesthesia is used, there are less needle sticks and up to two veins can be performed at one setting.  The ClosureFast uses much more lidocaine, so we are usually limited to one vein per session.
  • 3Although stockings are not required after Venaseal, Dr. Artwohl usually recommends they be worn, especially for those patients with large varicose veins.
  • 4Some people don’t like the idea of a “glue” being injected directly into their veins.  The glue used in the system, n-butyl-2-cyanoacrylate, is a commonly used medical adhesive that is used in various other applications and is considered safe.  It is often used to seal off other abnormal vessels, like arteriovenous malformations and esophageal varices.   It is also the glue that is used in some skin glues to seal wounds closed.  However, the glue will remain in your body permanently and patients who have Venaseal should consider themselves as having a permanent implant.
  • 5One theoretical advantage to Venaseal is that injections of tumescent anesthesia are not required so the discomfort of multiple needle sticks is avoided.  It would seem then, the Venaseal would be much more comfortable procedure as perceived by patients.
  • However,  a study that compared 108 Venaseal patients to 114 ClosureFast (Venefit) patients showed that there was no difference in perceived intra-operative discomfort between the Venaseal and ClosureFast (Venefit) patients.

Alaska Vein Clinic • 3300 Providence Drive, Suite 309 • Anchorage AK • 99508 

Tel 907-222-6240 •  Fax:  907-222-6870

Call us at 1-907-222-6240