Varicose Veins and Spider Veins

What are Varicose Veins?

The term "varicose" means abnormally enlarged or swollen, and is usually used to describe veins that are visibly protruding, sometimes causing pain or discomfort. Varicose veins are most common in the legs.

What are Spider Veins?

The term "spider veins" is used to describe the dilated capillaries that are visible on the skin, usually on the legs and face, resembling blue/purple spider legs. 

What Causes Varicose Veins? What Causes Spider Veins?

There are many potential causes for these unsightly veins, some are unavoidable, such as aging but some commonly recognized risk factors are:

  • family history
  • obesity
  • standing for extended periods of time (often due to one's occupation)
  • pregnancy
  • puberty
  • menopause
  • abdominal pressure (from constipation, wearing girdles etc)
  • trauma to the affected area
  • birth control pills
  • UV light exposure
  • smoking
  • lack of exercise

Are Varicose Veins or Spider Veins Dangerous?

In some cases, blood clots can result from varicose veins. Sometimes, varicose veins can cause pain in the affected person. Spider veins are not known to cause discomfort or lead to other health complications.

How Do You Treat Varicose Veins and Spider Veins?

There are many treatments for varicose veins and spider veins, varying in price, effort and effectiveness. Here are some recommended treatment options:

  • wear support stockings
  • lifestyle changes - good diet, adequate exercise and weight loss
  • sclerotherapy (CONTACT US to book a FREE consultation to see if sclerotherapy is a good option for you)
  • endovenous laser treatment
  • radiofrequency occlusion
  • surgery
  • laser and pulsed light

Will my Insurance Cover the Cost of Varicose Vein Treatment or Spider Vein Treatment?

Spider veins are generally more of a cosmetic problem, as they do not cause pain or discomfort in the affected individual. Spider veins also do not cause health problems as varicose veins sometimes do, and as such, Health Insurance will likely not cover the cost of any treatment for spider veins. On the other hand, varicose vein treatment is covered by some Health plans. 


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