Varicose Veins and Spider Veins Medication

Updated: Sep 25, 2020
  • Author: Robert Weiss, MD; Chief Editor: William D James, MD  more...
  • Print

Medication Summary

No oral or topical medications are of proven efficacy for venous disease. Several over-the-counter preparations make claims of efficacy, but prospective trials have not supported the use of any of these agents.

The selection of sclerosing agents and of concentrations and volumes to be used for sclerotherapy must be individualized for each patient and for each type and location of vein. The interested reader is referred to the bibliography for existing textbooks that treat the topic exhaustively.


Sclerosing Agent

Class Summary

These drugs are injected into varicose veins to produce endothelial destruction resulting in formation of a fibrotic cord. Eventually all the vascular tissue layers are reabsorbed.

Polidocanol (Asclera)

Polidocanol is a sclerosing agent indicated for uncomplicated spider veins (varicose veins ≤1 mm in diameter) and uncomplicated reticular veins (varicose veins 1-3 mm in diameter) in lower extremities.

When injected intravenously, it induces endothelial damage, causing platelet aggregation at the site of damage. This results in vessel occlusion that is eventually replaced with connective fibrous tissue.