Spider veins are small veins that appear beneath the surface of the skin and become visible through the epidermis. They occur when the veins stop working properly and can lead to other complications. If you are experiencing spider veins and are looking for a solution, continue reading to see if a treatment is right for you.
What causes spider veins?
Spider veins, or thread veins, are smaller than varicose veins. They are usually red. They may look like tree branches or spider webs. Spider veins are located underneath the skin’s surface and usually appear blue, but they do not make the skin bulge out like varicose veins do.
Spider veins can occur in the legs when the valves inside the veins stop functioning properly.
Veins carry blood back to the heart. To prevent blood from flowing backward, they contain a one-way valve that closes once the blood passes through it.
If this valve weakens or becomes compromised, the blood may struggle to flow and will begin to pool inside the vein. Over time, this bulge in the vein branches out, resulting in spider veins.
Spider veins on the face can be caused by stress and are often the result of tiny blood vessels bursting under the skin’s surface. Increased pressure or sun damage can cause this to occur. There are a number of factors that play into a person getting varicose veins and spider veins. These include:
- Occupations that involve a lot of standing
- Hormonal influences of pregnancy, puberty, and menopause
- The use of birth control pills
- Postmenopausal hormonal replacement
- A history of blood clots
- Conditions that cause increased pressure in the abdomen, such as tumors, constipation, and externally worn garments like girdles.
Other causes include trauma to the skin, previous vein surgery, and exposure to the sun.
Should I worry about spider veins?
Spider veins typically appear on the legs and face and are caused by small, damaged veins. They are generally not painful or harmful, however some people may wish to treat them for cosmetic reasons. Spider veins can be red, blue, or purple and may appear in the form of thin lines, webs, or branches.
Anyone can get spider veins but they’re more likely to appear later in life and much more common among women. In fact, more than half of women will develop these thin, red and blue spiderweb-like veins that often appear on the legs.
Unlike varicose veins, which bulge from the skin and occasionally lead to more serious issues, spider veins are usually not painful and typically don’t require medical treatment. But that doesn’t mean you have to like them, or even live with them.
Some people may feel self-conscious about spider veins, while others may be worried about getting them. If you’re wondering what causes spider veins, how you might be able to minimize them, or what you can do to get rid of them, we’ve got some answers.
Does high blood pressure cause spider veins?
Malfunctioning valves in feeder veins are the primary cause for spider veins. Spider veins in the legs and face are caused by dysfunctional valves inside feeder veins that allow blood to flow backwards instead of upwards toward the heart. This leads to backed-up blood that can cause to “dead end” veins that appear underneath the surface of the skin.
Many people have spider veins, which are enlarged capillaries. Capillaries are tiny vessels with extremely thin-walls that act as a bridge between arteries.
Spider veins may be caused by hormonal factors that are not yet understood. This is why spider veins most commonly occur in women, particularly during pregnancy.
Spider veins usually cause no symptoms. Some people do have pain or burning. Many people consider spider veins unsightly. Doctors recognize spider veins by their appearance. Tests are not needed.
If you or someone you know is suffering from complications due to spider veins, contact our office to get in touch with a specialist. To book an appointment, call (412) 312-4666 or visit us online at veinspecialistsofpittsburgh.com. We are located at 333 Allegheny Ave #200, Oakmont, PA 15139.