MRI-guided percutaneous sclerotherapy of venous malformations: initial clinical experience using a 3T MRI system

Daniel M. O'Mara, Alexandra J. Berges, Jan Fritz, Clifford R. Weiss

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: Venous malformations (VMs) are low-flow vascular anomalies that are commonly treated with image-guided percutaneous sclerotherapy. Although many VMs can be safely accessed and treated using ultrasonography and fluoroscopy, some lesions may be better treated with magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)–guided sclerotherapy. The aim of this study is to evaluate the feasibility, efficiency, and outcomes of MRI-guided sclerotherapy of VMs using a 3T MRI system. Methods: Six patients with VMs in the neck (n = 2), chest (n = 1), and extremities (n = 3) underwent sclerotherapy with 3T MRI guidance. Feasibility was assessed by calculating the technical success rate and procedural efficiency. Efficiency was evaluated by using planning, targeting, intervention, and total procedure times. Outcomes were assessed by measuring VM volumes before and after sclerotherapy, patient-reported pain scores, and occurrence of complications. Results: Technical success was achieved in all 6 procedures. There was a non-significant 30% decrease in mean VM volume after the procedure (P = .350). The procedure resulted in a decrease in mean pain score (on an 11-point scale) of 2.6 points (P = .003). After the procedure, 4 patients reported complete pain resolution, 1 reported partial pain resolution, and 1 reported no change in pain. Procedural efficiency was consistent with similar sclerotherapy procedures performed at our institution. There were no major or minor complications. Conclusion: 3T MRI guidance is feasible for percutaneous sclerotherapy of VMs, with promising initial technical success rates, procedural efficiency, and therapeutic outcomes without complications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)8-14
Number of pages7
JournalClinical Imaging
StatePublished - Sep 2020


  • Embolization
  • Sclerotherapy
  • Sodium tetradecyl sulfate
  • Vascular anomaly
  • Venous malformation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Radiology Nuclear Medicine and imaging


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