If you don’t have them yourself, you’ve certainly seen them — small web-like clusters of veins, most often on the legs, and sometimes the face. These small, visible veins are called spider veins, and they have many different potential causes.
Dr. Jennifer Tauber at New Canaan Podiatry has the knowledge and experience necessary to provide an evaluation and treatment recommendation for your spider veins.
Are they dangerous?
The answer to the question of whether or not spider veins present a health risk is “probably not.” Most of the time, spider veins are simply a cosmetic issue. If their appearance bothers you, there are effective, safe treatments available at New Canaan Podiatry.
In some rare cases, spider veins may be an early sign of venous insufficiency or of your circulatory system not functioning quite properly. Symptoms of this condition include pain, such as a burning sensation in your legs, or a feeling of heaviness in your legs.
Why spider veins appear
Spider veins appear when your veins don’t work as they should. You may imagine your blood vessels as empty tubes through which your blood flows, but the truth is that they are far more complex.
Throughout your veins, there are small valves that open and close as necessary for your blood to flow. These valves function to prevent gravity from simply pulling all of your blood to your lower extremities.
Over time, the valves can become leaky, allowing blood to seep back through. That blood builds up, creating pressure on your veins, weakening them and making them bigger and more visible.
Who is most likely to get spider veins
Some things make it more likely that you’ll develop spider veins. For example, genetics can play a role. If spider veins run in your family has spider veins, you’re likely to, as well. Additional risk factors include:
- Being a woman
- Taking birth control pills
- Hormone replacement therapy
- Past blood clots
- Wearing a girdle or other garment that’s tight on your abdomen
- Other conditions, such as a tumor
- A job that requires standing for many hours
The most appropriate treatment depends on whether you have some underlying medical issue. Dr. Tauber provides a thorough exam and evaluation before making a recommendation, so you can be confident regarding the treatment approach she suggests.
One common treatment for cosmetic spider veins is the use of a laser to seal off the visible veins. Your blood will flow to functioning healthy veins, and the sealed vein will eventually be disposed of through your body’s natural systems effectively disappearing.
Laser treatment for spider veins doesn’t hurt, and you won’t even have to endure a needle stick. If you’d like to learn more about how Dr. Tauber treats spider veins, book an appointment for a consultation. You can schedule by phone, or use our simple online tool.