Reversible cardiac arrest after polidocanol sclerotherapy of peripheral venous malformation

Dermatol Surg. 2002 Feb;28(2):153-5. doi: 10.1046/j.1524-4725.2002.00344.x.


Background: Polidocanol sclerotherapy is a well-established therapeutic modality for the treatment of venous malformations. Systemic complications are extremely rare.

Objective: To report a case of cardiac complication after polidocanol injection of peripheral venous malformation.

Methods: A case report and a review of the English language literature using a published MEDLINE search strategy.

Results: A patient undergoing polidocanol sclerotherapy for a symptomatic venous malformation of the right inferior limb developed cardiac arrest shortly after injection of the sclerosing agent which was promptly reversed.

Conclusion: Systemic complications following sclerotherapy may occur even when the sclerosant is injected in peripheral veins or venous malformations. Clinicians should be alerted to the possibility of uncommon but life-threatening adverse effects.

MeSH terms

  • Arteriovenous Malformations / complications
  • Arteriovenous Malformations / diagnostic imaging
  • Arteriovenous Malformations / therapy*
  • Cardiopulmonary Resuscitation
  • Child, Preschool
  • Diagnosis, Differential
  • Heart Arrest / chemically induced
  • Heart Arrest / diagnosis*
  • Heart Arrest / therapy
  • Humans
  • Iliac Vein / abnormalities*
  • Leg / blood supply
  • Pain / etiology
  • Polidocanol
  • Polyethylene Glycols / administration & dosage
  • Polyethylene Glycols / adverse effects*
  • Sclerosing Solutions / administration & dosage
  • Sclerosing Solutions / adverse effects*
  • Sclerotherapy / adverse effects
  • Ultrasonography


  • Sclerosing Solutions
  • Polidocanol
  • Polyethylene Glycols