Spider veins are smaller, thread-like veins that occur near the surface of the skin and often appear on the legs or face. They can appear as red, purplish, or blue veins and often look like tree branches or spider webs with jagged edges that grow outward. Spider veins can cover a small area and avoid notice, or they can cover a larger area and become quite unsightly. It is also possible that they may enlarge over time. Some estimate that over half of all adult females will develop spider veins.
Spider veins, or telangiectasias, are often related to (and may appear in combination with) varicose veins and can derive from the same underlying causes. They occur in the capillaries closest to the surface of the skin, which are fed by veins called reticular veins (also know as ‘feeder veins’).’
Cause of Spider Veins
SThe most common cause of spider veins is genetic predisposition. They occur more frequently in women (for instance, in and around a pregnancy). They also may be the result of a traumatic injury. Spider veins on the face may be related to excessive sun exposure.
Spider Vein Treatment
The most common spider vein treatments are sclerotherapy and to a lesser extent, surface (non-surgical) laser treatment. Sclerotherapy involves the injection (directly into the spider vein) of a chemical solution that will close the offending vein, causing it to disintegrate. If underlying venous disease is present, other vein treatmentmethods may need to be employed.
Spider veins, once treated, may appear to recur with time, but often this is the result of new spider veins growing in nearby capillaries. If this occurs, additional spider vein treatments may be necessary.