“Spider veins” are very common and can occur at any time throughout life, although they more typically appear in the later part of life. If you have noticed spider veins lately, you may be wondering – are they something that you should worry about?
What are spider veins?
Spider veins are those thin lines in the legs that are blue, red, or purple. These lines can branch out and resemble spider webs. It is thought that spider veins form when veins become weakened or damaged. These are different from varicose veins, which are larger and more noticeable and bulge out from the skin.
Women are more likely than men to develop spider veins, and other risk factors include shifting hormone levels that can weaken vein walls, obesity, a family history of spider veins, or years of standing or sitting for long periods of time. Aging can be another risk factor, as wear and tear on the veins causes them to weaken and blood to start collecting in them.
Lifestyle changes can help to prevent spider veins and to keep them from getting worse. Take care of skin by using sunscreen, get regular exercise, and avoid too much alcohol and too much time spent in the hot tub or sauna. You should also avoid standing or sitting for too long; take a break by walking around every half an hour or so.
Are these veins dangerous?
Varicose veins can be quite painful, and can indicate more serious underlying issues, such as blood clots.
Typically, though, spider veins are nothing to worry about. However, if you feel they are unsightly, you have a few options for treatment, including compression stockings, laser treatment, surgery, and sclerotherapy. Sclerotherapy is a quick, effective treatment that can be done in the doctor’s office. It involves injection of a special chemical into the veins that makes the blood reroute to other, healthier veins.
If you are concerned about the appearance of spider veins – or if you have painful varicose veins – there are quick and effective treatments available such as sclerotherapy. Call Dr. Sammy A. Zakhary in the Glendale, Arizona, office for a consultation. Call today at (623) 258-3255.