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When your leg veins are under attack

varicose veins vs spider veins

Spider Veins – Are those a direct risk to your health

What are spider veins?

Spider veins are red, purple, or blue thin veins measuring around 1 to 1.5 mm and much smaller than varicose veins. Mostly seen on legs, thighs, ankles, or face they look like a bunch of reddish lines branching out and quite often they resemble spider webs. Though painless and without symptoms, they can be a cosmetic nuisance. Discomfort is more if these abnormal veins are present in your legs. 

Do spider veins need treatment?

Generally, spider veins do not cause a direct health risk. However, it needs to be checked as it can be indicative of some serious issues that need to be addressed. If you have spider veins, the chances of you getting varicose veins are more. Varicose veins are usually red and are twisted, gnarled, deeper and larger than spider veins.

Not having pain or symptoms should not prevent you from visiting your doctor. Spider veins develop when the valves in the veins turn faulty. Veins carry blood back to the heart. To prevent blood from flowing backward, they contain a one-way valve that closes once the blood passes through it.

If this valve weakens or becomes damaged, the blood may struggle to flow in the correct direction and can begin to pool inside the vein. Over time, this can cause a bulge in the vein that branches out, resulting in spider veins. 

 Early detection of vein issues will prevent the disease from progressing into complications like varicose veins, infections, ulcers, and other circulation issues.

How can spider veins impact your health?

If you have spider veins along with other conditions like diabetes, you have a higher risk of developing blood clots. Deep Vein Thrombosis (DVT) is a condition when a clot forms in a major vein of the leg or the arms, brain, or other large veins in the body. A clot in a vein may occasionally detach from its origin and travel through the heart to the lungs where it may obstruct an adequate blood flow. This condition is called pulmonary embolism (PE) of the lungs and can be extremely dangerous.

Treatment alternatives for spider veins

Nowadays, there are various treatment options available for spider veins. 

  • Compression socks and stockings

Wearing support pantyhose and compression stockings provide pressure around feet, calf, and ankles and help reduce the swelling and possibility of blood clots in the legs. 

The procedure involves directly injecting a sclerosing agent into the affected veins eventually causing them to shrink and disappear. 

The duration of each treatment session depends on the number of veins to be treated. Depending on the results your doctor will decide if additional sessions are needed for complete cure. Procedural results are excellent and comparable to surgery but with much lesser complications.  

  • Endovenous laser therapy (EVLT)

EVLT is a contemporary procedure for treating spider veins and small varicose veins. It is a minimally invasive procedure that makes use of radiofrequency or laser energy to burn the abnormal veins that lead to varicose veins.

At Avis vascular center, a detailed ultrasound provides accurate diagnosis. Based on your specific needs, a personalized treatment plan is developed. Our doctors at Avis, insist on proper follow up visits and compliance to post treatment instructions which help to prevent progressive vein conditions.

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