Singapore – 14 July, 2021 – Vascular & Interventional Centre (VIC), a Singapore-based vascular clinic with a full-suite day surgery centre at Novena Specialist Centre, has become the first vascular clinic to offer Cryo-Laser and Cryo-Sclerotherapy treatment for varicose vein patients in Singapore. With this offer, VIC will have a holistic and comprehensive vein programme for its patients.
Abbreviated as CLaCS, this is a new, advanced treatment for varicose veins which combines transdermal laser and injection sclerotherapy, performed with cold air blown onto the skin at minus 20 degrees Celsius.
CLaCS was created by Dr. Roberto Kasuo Miyake in 2002, to meet his patients’ requests for spider/reticular vein treatments that leave behind minimal scarring and pigmentation.
Dr Benjamin Chua, Medical Director of VIC, said, “We are very excited to announce that the Vascular & Interventional Centre is able to offer this new and advanced treatment for spider/reticular and varicose veins in Singapore. This is part of VIC’s ongoing mission to provide the latest treatments and most advanced techniques that medicine has to offer, for the benefit of our patients.”
The new CLaCS technique’s main advantages are seen to be its efficacy for the treatment of spider veins and prominent veins, with little discomfort from the treatment, due to the cold air that is directed at the site of the minimally-invasive laser or needle application.
If found suitable for the procedure, patients with spider/reticular veins will receive their CLaCS treatments under the expert hands of Dr. Benjamin Chua (Medical Director and Senior Consultant Vascular Surgeon) and Dr. Manesh Taneja (Director and Consultant, Vascular and Interventional Radiology), using Augmented Reality, in a fully equipped day surgery centre at VIC’s third and largest flagship clinic, which is centrally located at Novena Specialist Centre.
CLaCS: A novel treatment for an unsightly problem
Spider veins are thread-like bluish and reddish fine veins that can occur in streaky patches in the skin. Reticular veins are large diameter bluish/greenish veins that form a dense network in the skin. Both spider and reticular veins can be found in patches, commonly in the thighs, calves and ankles.
Dr. Chua explained, “Spider and reticular veins commonly present as unsightly patches of blood vessels in the legs of patients. Aside from the unsightly aesthetics, many patients experience pain and swelling as well as spontaneous bleeding and bruising from these veins.”
“Development of spider/reticular veins may happen if you are overweight, stand for long periods of time, have had multiple pregnancies or have a family history of varicose veins.”
Apart from being unsightly, they may also indicate the presence of more severe varicose veins or venous reflux disease of the legs and pelvis (Pelvic Congestion Syndrome).
According to Dr. Chua, patients with spider/reticular veins and varicose veins should get treated before the condition progresses.
“If left untreated, varicose veins may result in ulcers on the skin surface. The ulcers may get infected, resulting in circulatory and skin problems in the legs.” said Dr. Chua.
A 2014 peer-reviewed study of 140 patients treated with CLaCS concluded that “CLaCS guided by Augmented Reality is a very effective option to treat telangiectasias, reticular and feeder veins. It is a safe method based on the employment of technology and an organic sclerosing agent. It dispenses the use of any other medication, thus being free of risk of anaphylaxis or embolism.”
During the procedure, a transdermal laser is fired into the vein, causing the vein interior to decrease in size. A chemical sclerosant (a solution which irritates the vessel) is injected into the veins, causing the veins to close off, shrink and eventually disappear. The entire procedure is done under extreme skin cooling (via an air stream at minus 20 degrees Celsius) for maximum patient comfort, and the procedure is suitable for spider veins, as patients experience minimal scarring and pigmentation.
The procedure can take from about 15 minutes to an hour to perform, depending on the complexity of the varicose veins. Patients will be able to return to their daily activities anywhere from a few days to a week, as compared to a few weeks recovery for conventional treatment.
Treatment options for varicose veins
Varicose veins are large engorged veins commonly seen over the calves and thighs and can develop together with spider/reticular veins. The underlying cause of varicose veins is weakness in the valves of the vein that drain the leg blood flow, causing blood to flow back down the vein and pool downwards in the legs – a condition described as chronic venous insufficiency.
Once diagnosed with varicose veins, patient have many treatment options:
Traditional options for dealing with unsightly varicose veins include wearing compression stockings, and surgery to ligate (tie up) and strip (pull) the veins out.
The latter option can cause pain, bleeding and bruising, however, which is why VIC has always championed minimally-invasive techniques such as:
- Radio-frequency ablation (RFA) – the use of radiofrequencies to heat up the vein walls and seal the veins; and
- Venaseal / Venablock Glue Closure – using medical adhesive to permanently seal the veins; or
- A combination of both
If patients have varicose veins together with spider/reticular veins, these treatments can be combined with the CLaCs technique.
With these new and advanced minimally invasive techniques, varicose and spider vein patients can be treated effectively with minimal pain and scarring as a day procedure at the VIC Day Surgery Centre. Patients can expect to be discharged a few hours after the procedure, walking home and return to their daily activities within 2-3 days.
Performed by a team of expert clinical specialists
The team of clinical specialists at VIC comprises of Dr Benjamin Chua, Vascular Surgeon and Dr Manish Taneja, Interventional Radiologist.
The team cares for patients at the VIC day surgery centre which provides modern facilities for vascular treatment and offers a private, one-stop experience that fully serves every step of a patient’s journey under one roof: from first consultations to ultrasound scans to having their treatments performed – the centre even has its own recovery ward for patients to rest after their procedures.
The VIC team also cares for patients at their other clinics at Mount Elizabeth Novena Hospital and Farrer Park Hospital, Singapore, as well as perform procedures at their Novena Specialist Centre day surgery centre and other hospitals.
For more information on CLaCS, visit VIC’s microsite on varicose veins at https://www.sgvascularctr.com/varicose-veins/