The Difference Between Varicose Veins and Spider Veins


Women become distressed when they notice the appearance of their legs begin to change. The best vein clinic in Minnesota will treat both men and women who have varicose veins or spider veins in several ways. However, these are two different vascular conditions that present themselves in different ways and are properly diagnosed by a vascular specialist before considering options for proper treatment. Here are ways to tell if you have spider veins or varicose veins and how each may be treated.

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What Are Spider Veins?

Spider veins can appear as blue, purple, or red vessels that are very small and tend to twist and turn just beneath the skin surface. One of the reasons women seek treatment of spider veins is because they are so visible, even though they are usually harmless and are more of a cosmetic issue. Don’t ignore spider veins as they may be a precursor to the formation of varicose veins. The most common reason for developing these thin vein discolorations can be poor circulation from the heart to the feet.

Often spider veins resemble a spider’s web. If you notice short and jagged lines that are anywhere between your groin and ankle areas, these are possibly spider veins. To reduce the chance of developing spider veins, both men and women can do the following to increase the health of their lower legs:

  • Improve blood circulation in the legs by wearing graduated compression socks and occasionally elevating the feet.
  • Exercise regularly and control your weight to reduce the pressure on your legs
  • Avoid standing for long periods time or crossing your legs when sitting.

The Varicose Veins Difference

Varicose veins will present as larger, swollen veins protruding from the skin on the leg and are also noticeable visible. It could be a genetic condition that runs in the family or due to other health or lifestyle factors, including:

  • A hormonal imbalance, especially during pregnancy
  • From using birth control pills
  • Occupations that demand long hours standing
  • A history of blood clots or other medical conditions

The chance of developing varicose veins will increase with age. A vascular treatment center may use advanced technologies to treat varicose veins including laser treatments, radiofrequency occlusion, or intense pulsed light treatments. Surgery is also an option to treating varicose veins that may involve tying of affected veins (ligation) or removing long sections of the vein. Often these treatments are performed using local anesthesia, but sometimes large varicose vein treatments may require spinal or general anesthesia. In most cases, the patient is home the same day following the procedure.

When you need the best vein clinic in Minnesota, contact Hogue Clinics innovative leaders in vascular healthcare. Our professional teams are committed to treatment methods that are safe and minimally invasive to achieve the best results.