Unsightly spider veins are those small varicose veins that appear as jagged purple and blue lines visible through the skin. Usually they are seen on the legs, but can appear on the face and chest as well.
Causes of Spider Veins
Causes include heredity and obesity, but occupations that require a lot of standing like teaching or nursing also contribute. Other factors include aging, pregnancy, prior trauma or surgery to the leg. Spider veins may be unsightly and sometimes painful, but rarely are a serious health treat.
They tend to develop more often in women than in men and increase in frequency with age. It is estimated that 60% of adults will develop spider veins.
Treatment Options for Spider Veins
There are many different treatment options for spider veins depending on your own personal health objectives.
Support stockings can relieve much of the pain and are widely available. But you may also want to consider some lifestyle changes. Good skin hygiene, weight loss (if needed), and walking can help. Eating a low-salt diet reduces water retention and swelling.
Sclerotherapy uses a special medicated solution injected directly into the vein, causing the veins to disappear over 4 to 6 weeks. It is simple, relatively inexpensive and performed on an outpatient basis.
Endovenous Laser Treatment
A small laser fiber is inserted into the vein and pulses of laser light are delivered within the vein, causing it to collapse. This treatment is rendered in an outpatient setting with local anesthesia.
Traditional surgery that involves tying off a vein. Surgery may be performed using local or general anesthesia and most patients return home the same day.
Another surgical procedure that is rarely used. This involves removing a segment of the vein while you are under a general anesthesia.
From a health perspective, treatment for spider veins is an elective procedure. Some people have no pain, so no treatment is necessary, unless they want the
veins removed for cosmetic reasons. It is entirely your choice.
For more information about your spider vein healthcare options, call the Jefferson Surgical Clinic for a consultation at 540-283-6000.