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Spider Veins

Symptoms of spider veins (and how they are different from varicose veins) Though both spider veins and varicose veins are common, not everyone can differentiate between the two. Spider veins are small, pronounced vessels in the legs that can be purple, red, or blue, and often appear in a pattern similar to that of a spiderweb. Though seemingly a cosmetic issue at first, these little annoyances can develop into symptomatic (or asymptomatic) varicose veins over time.

  • Heavy legs
  • Swelling in the ankles and legs
  • Restless legs at night and while sitting
  • Leg pain, particularly at night or at the end of the day
  • Leg muscle fatigue
  • Rashes and other unusual skin changes
  • Ulcers in the lower leg

**some of these may or may not accompany their characteristic appearance.

Patients with any or all of these symptoms as the result of their venous insufficiency may benefit from the range of treatments we have available, and generally with minimal recovery time. By working with an experienced provider at VIP Centers of America, you can be assured that you’ll receive the highest standard of care— improving your self-confidence and skin appearance.

What are spider veins?
Spider veins are small veins that are red, purple or blue and are thin and weblike or “squiggly” in nature.

What causes spider veins?
Spider veins are caused by venous insufficiency. Weak venous valves in the legs cause the blood to move in the opposite direction, not towards the heart, causing pooling of blood in the valves. This further leads to the development of superficial spider veins. A family history of spider veins, an occupation that involves standing continuously, obesity, pregnancy, and a history of blood clots are predisposing factors that contribute to spider veins.

Are spider veins dangerous?
Spider veins are not life threatening however they may be a sign of an underlying problem known as vein disease or venous insufficiency. When left untreated this may lead to the development of varicose veins and ulcers. Also painful symptoms such as cramping, swelling, and heaviness in the legs are associated with spider veins and venous insufficiencies.

How are spider veins diagnosed?
Spider veins are typically located on the superficial surface of a patient’s skin therefore they are easy to see without any devices. A diagnostic ultrasound is performed to identify the underlying issue of venous insufficiency.

What are the treatment options for spider veins?
Sclerotherapy and laser therapy are used to treat the appearance of spider veins. Modalities used to treat venous disease, the underlying cause of spider veins, include radiofrequency ablations, sclerotherapy, VenaSeal, and endovenous laser ablations.

Can I do anything to prevent spider veins?
The development of spider veins may be caused by heredity, obesity, and pregnancy. Measures that can be taken to prevent spider veins or improve symptoms are elevation of the legs, trying to sit periodically if a person has an occupation where they are standing constantly, wearing compression stockings, and not crossing the legs while sitting.

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