Are Those Unsightly Splotches Varicose Veins or Spider Veins?
- Posted on: Apr 15 2016
Varicose veins are a common condition that affects men and women to varying degrees. More than a cosmetic issue, these problematic veins can cause debilitating pain, and factor into a number of different health complications.
What are Varicose Veins?
Varicose veins are those which have become dilated and swollen. They can span the entire length of the leg, or affect a small area. The bulging appearance of varicose veins is the result of pooled blood due to the inability of the vein to outwork the force of gravity in pushing blood back up toward the heart. As the flow of blood stops or reverses, veins swell.
These problematic veins develop as a result of poor function in blood vessels in the leg. Many people complain of an ache or other pain when these veins are present. In addition to discomfort, varicose veins are a risk factor in the development of inflammatory vein conditions, skin ulcers, and blood clots.
Unlike varicose veins, spider veins are more of a cosmetic concern than a health condition that requires prompt treatment. Spider veins may be seen on the face as well as the legs and ankles. As smaller vessels become dilated due to poor circulation, they appear as localized clusters of veins just beneath the surface of the skin. Spider veins may look red, blue, or purple, and tend to be very conspicuous. Due to their high visibility, many patients seek treatment to remove them.
The term “spider veins” relates to the web-like network of veins that become visible on the skin. In some cases, veins branch off from the localized network and send jagged lines across the leg or the face. Because physical appearance is highly valued in our society, the person with spider veins may feel embarrassed, or uncomfortable wearing clothing that would reveal their legs.
Treating Problematic Veins
Whether you have spider veins, varicose veins, or both, you can find the treatment that you need at The Vein Clinic in Columbia. Dr. Reynolds has focused his practice on vein treatments for the past 12 years, and has more than 25 years experience in medicine and vascular surgery. To see how we can help you regain comfort and confidence, call (803) 253-8667 or contact us here.