Spider veins can be unsightly, but the good news is there are many effective ways for eliminating these visible vein networks today. However, if the underlying cause of the spider veins is not addressed, you have a much higher risk for those veins to return. If you are ready to seek spider vein treatment, it is important to understand how you can get to the root of your spider vein problem to treat those unattractive veins once and for all.
What is Venous Insufficiency?
Spider veins, like varicose veins, can be caused by an underlying condition known as venous insufficiency. Blood typically flows in a single direction through veins, back to the heart. Valves in the veins keep the blood flowing properly. Over time, those valves can wear out, leading to blood leaking back into the veins and the formation of spider veins.
Venous insufficiency may occur in the surface veins that become spider veins, or in the slightly deeper veins that connect to the smaller, surface veins, sometimes referred to as “feeder” veins. It is important to pinpoint exactly where the venous insufficiency is located if you want your vein treatment to work on a long-term basis.
What are “Feeder” Veins?
“Feeder” veins, also known as reticular veins, are smaller than varicose veins, but larger than spider veins. They may appear as relatively straight blue or green lines on the surface of the skin. In some cases, reticular veins can also become ropy and bulging, like varicose veins.
Reticular veins are called feeders because they feed blood into the smaller spider veins. If circulation in these veins becomes impeded, you can develop the visible signs of spider veins. Unfortunately, treating the spider veins alone will not solve your vascular issues, since the feeder veins will continue to swell.
Treating Spider Veins
If reticular veins led to the formation of your spider veins, you will be more likely to experience symptoms like leg heaviness and fatigue, swelling and pain. When a patient has symptoms with their spider veins, it is important to assess the condition of the underlying veins to be sure the appropriate veins are treated. This can usually be done through a non-invasive test known as duplex ultrasound, which uses sound waves to create an image of the vessels under the skin and the blood flow through those vessels.
Both spider veins and reticular veins can be treated with minimally-invasive procedures today. At Advanced Vein & Vascular Center, we offer a variety of vein treatments that use innovative technology like lasers and radiofrequency energy to eliminate affected veins without discomfort or downtime. To learn more about our treatment options, contact Advanced Vein and Vascular Center at 610-200-6924.