Drugmaker wins US approval for varicose vein drug

WASHINGTON (AP) — Specialty drugmaker BTG PLC said Tuesday it received U.S. approval to market an injectable drug to treat patients with varicose veins.

The drug, VarithenaT, is pharmaceutical foam dispensed from a canister device. The Food and Drug Administration approved the treatment based on two studies in which VarithenaT led to improvements in symptoms of "superficial venous incompetence and the appearance of visible varicosities" in patients, the company said in a statement.

More than 30 million adults in the U.S. have varicose veins, according to BTG. The drugmaker says varicose veins can lead to pain, aching, restless legs, cramps and other symptoms. Current treatments for the condition include conventional surgery, laser surgery and heat-based catheter procedures.

London-based BTG said it plans to launch the drug in the second quarter of 2014.