Interventional Radiology

Embolization and Sclerosis of Vascular Malformations

Embolization and Sclerosis is a minimally invasive nonsurgical treatment that can close down or kill all or part of a vascular malformation.

Vascular Malformations

Vascular malformations are abnormalities in the arteries, veins or lymph vessels. Vascular malformations are present at birth, and often grow during times of hormonal change such as puberty and pregnancy.  Vascular malformations generally cause pain, deformity and difficulty using the affected body part.

There are three main types of vascular malformation:

  1. Arteriovenous Malformations (AVM) are blood vessel abnormalities that result in high blood flow and are considered the most serious type of vascular malformation. They contain arteries and veins.
  2. Venous Malformations (VM) are the most common kind of vascular malformation. They contain only veins.
  3. Lymphatic Malformations (LM) are another common form of vascular malformation that contain special ducts, called lymphatics.

Treatment with Embolization and Sclerosis

The treatment of any vascular malformation involves obstructing the blood flow to the affected area as they generally do not respond well to surgery. Interventional radiologists specialize in treating vascular malformations. An interventional radiologist will insert a needle or catheter into the malformation and inject an agent to stop blood flow through the malformation and injure the malformation. Some of the agents used include coils, alcohol and special glues.


Schedule a consult with an interventional radiologist to discuss treatment of vascular malformations.