Spider veins are a common affliction for both men and women today.

Those networks of red and blue lines often appear on the legs, but you might also find them on the face, particularly around the nose and cheek area. Considering spider veins as simply a cosmetic problem is not entirely true. It is not uncommon for patients with patches of spider veins to also have underlying venus reflux with varicose veins. We often suggest an ultrasound to rule out reflux before treating those patients since the spider veins would come back if the underlying problem isn’t eliminated.

People with only stray spider veins on their legs can likely rule out venus reflux as an underlying cause. Although if in doubt, we also recommend seeking a professional opinion.

If you have spider veins and experience uncomfortable symptoms like itching, burning or aching legs, especially at the end of the day, it may be a sign that something more serious is going on. There are many factors that can lead to the formation of spider veins, but the good news is there are nearly as many treatment options to get rid of those visible vein networks for good.

Are You at Risk for Spider Veins?

Spider vein causes can be difficult to stop or prevent. These factors don’t necessarily mean you will definitely develop the visible veins, but they do increase your risk for doing so:

  • Heredity – if one or both of your parents have spider veins, there is a much higher likelihood you will develop them as well
  • Pregnancy – a combination of hormonal fluctuations and increased blood flow during those nine months create a ripe breeding ground for spider veins
  • Hormonal Fluctuations – hormones can fluctuate at other times of life, which can also increase your risk for seeing a few of those vein networks form
  • Aging – both spider and varicose veins are more common in adults over the age of 50
  • Skin Conditions – people with rosacea are more likely to develop spider veins on the face, along with the redness and inflammation common with this condition

Other Spider Vein Causes

There are a number of additional causes of varicose veins that are more controllable and preventable. These include:

  • Weight Gain – additional weight puts additional strain on the veins, so keeping the pounds down may help to ward off those visible lines
  • Sun Damage – just one more reason to wear sunscreen daily to protect your skin from those harmful UV rays
  • Oral Contraceptives – the hormones in these medications can increase your likelihood of developing spider veins
  • Steroids – both topical and oral steroids used over an extended period of time may contribute to the formation of spider veins
  • Skin Trauma – injuries to the skin can impact blood flow and increase the risk of developing spider veins over time

Spider Vein Treatment Options that Work

At Vein Specialists of the Carolinas, our most frequent treatment of choice for spider veins is an injectable procedure known as sclerotherapy. Successfully used for this purpose for decades, sclerotherapy has only improved over time with more efficient injectable solutions and techniques that effectively eliminate spider veins from all areas of the body.

The procedure uses a very small needle to inject a solution directly into the visible vein. The solution irritates the lining of the vein so the vessel seal closes and collapses. Over time, the vessel is reabsorbed by the body and blood is rerouted to healthy veins nearby.

Sclerotherapy takes just a few minutes to complete and involves little discomfort. Most patients are able to return to their daily activities as soon as the procedure is over. In some cases, multiple treatment sessions may be needed to achieve full results.

If you are embarrassed by unsightly spider veins, help is available. Contact Vein Specialists of the Carolinas in Gastonia at 704-861-2072 or in Charlotte at 704-544-5245 to find out if sclerotherapy is the right treatment for you.

“All We Do Is Veins, All Day Every Day.”



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