Foam Sclerotherapy Technique Questioned in Malpractice Case

Cody Porcoro

Written by
— Updated on January 2, 2018

A young woman admitted to medical services for sclerotherapy treatment claimed that she had been a victim of her physician’s malpractice after her ring finger had to be amputated. Though she had been given a foam sclerotherapy treatment to her left hand, her veins showed no sign of reduced clotting, and her finger became increasingly purple and painful. She called the Nurse Hotline, and was instructed to go to the Emergency Room, where a physician used a doppler to see if blood flow could be detected. Following this exam, the patient became violently ill, sweating profusely and violently vomiting. The patient was admitted to intensive care, where an angiogram showed that both main arteries providing blood flow to the finger had been clamped shut. After another procedure to open her arteries, she was assessed to require amputation on the top portion of her finger. Since a vascularized pedicle growing flap procedure was performed, the patient then had to have her finger sutured to her groin for a number of weeks, and ultimately requiring an expert in interventional radiology to comment on the case.

Question(s) For Expert Witness

  • 1. Do you routinely treat patients like the one in this case?
  • 2. Do you have familiarity with the subject matter described above?

Expert Witness Response E-007295

I routinely treat patients like the one described in this case. I treat both vascular malformations and superficial varicosities and ‘spider,’ or reticular, veins. I am very familiar with the subject matter pertaining to this case. I’ve published and lectured on venous insufficiency and published on vascular malformation treatments. I have not had a patient develop this complication but I have seen it occur to patients treated by other physicians.

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