If you have spider veins you are probably well aware of how they get their name. These small vessels are red, purple or blue in color and through a series of twists and turns resemble a spider web most often visible on the legs or face. The Cleveland Clinic suggests almost 80 million Americans have spider or varicose veins. As with varicose veins the risk factors of developing spider veins are similar:
- Family History
- Prolonged standing or sitting
- Hormonal changes such as pregnancy or menopause
- Hormonal supplements such as replacement or birth control pills
For spider veins the chief complaint from patients is their appearance. Spider veins are generally harmless, but should be evaluated by an experienced vascular surgeon to ensure there is no underlying venous disease. Spider veins as a stand-alone condition without the presence of venous disease are more of a cosmetic concern and insurance companies often do not consider treatment “medically necessary”. Here are some tactics for treatment to delay the onset or reduce the appearance of exiting spider veins:
- Compression Garments. This is often the first line of defense offered by a vein specialist. Properly fitting support hose can help support circulation in the legs and can be especially helpful to individuals with occupations requiring extended periods of standing or sitting.
- Elevation. If your occupation requires extended periods of standing or sitting it is important to take frequent breaks and elevate your legs above your heart for at least one 10 to 15 minute interval each day.
- Lifestyle Changes. Eating a healthy diet and maintaining an optimal weight can alleviate undue pressure on the legs. Regular physical activity can also promote proper blood flow, reducing your risk of developing pesky spider veins.
- Sclerotherapy. This is a medical procedure using a highly concentrated saline solution or foam, which is injected directly into the spider vein causing it to gradually fade over a three to six week period. This is a simple and relatively inexpensive procedure performed in an outpatient setting. If spider veins are more severe they may require a more advanced treatment such as Endovenous Laser Therapy or Radiofrequency Ablation.
With the treatment options available today, there is no reason spider veins should hold you back from anything in life. Call Premier Vein Clinics in Knoxville today at (865) 588-8229 or request a consult online and find out if sclerotherapy is an option for you.