The Difference Between Spider Veins and Varicose Veins

Spider Veins and Varicose Vein Educational Information


No matter which way you look at it, vein removal procedures in Miami will be top on your list the moment you or your family members notice those veins creeping up your legs. Whether they are spider veins or varicose veins, they’re not attractive, and in many cases – not healthy.



At Fox Vein and Laser Experts, a leading vein removal doctor in Miami, we’ve helped thousands of clients treat venous disease and remove those deep veins. But before you make the decision to treat your leg veins, it’s important to understand the difference between spider veins and varicose veins.


Did you think varicose veins and spider veins were the same? You’re not alone.

Spider veins – the kind you notice in small groups underneath your skin, are not just reserved for the legs. According to WebMDSpider veins are smaller, red, purple, and blue vessels that also twist and turn. Spider veins are easily visible through the skin, as well. They are typically visible on the legs and face. Since spider veins are smaller and usually less extreme than varicose veins, there isn’t always a sense of urgency to remove these – but beware, as they spread quickly and almost 60% of people with them have symptoms.

What do spider veins look like?

  • A cluster of small, dilated veins that appear close to the surface of the skin.
  • Spider webs or branches, usually red or blue in color.

Varicose veins tend to be larger than spider veins. These include the larger veins responsible for supplying tissues with a larger amount of blood. These also tend to be deeper in the skin than the blood vessels responsible for spider veins, but their expansion tends to be larger. This is why varicose veins are often felt rather than seen. They can cause everything from rigid bumps to painful swelling.

What do varicose veins look like?

  • Veins that are dark purple or blue in color
  • Veins that appear twisted and bulging; often like cords on your legs

And what’s worse than how varicose veins make your legs look, is how they make your legs feel especially if there’s any pain. But treatment for varicose veins is our specialty!

Dr. Susan Fox, owner and founder of Fox Vein & Laser Experts in Hollywood and Pembroke Pines says, “The ultimate complaints about spider veins are that they’re aesthetically unpleasing, especially in an aesthetic conscious area like Miami Beach, but with varicose veins, there are some physical issues that present as wellPainful signs and symptoms of varicose veins, such as, an achy or heavy feeling in your legs burning, throbbing, muscle cramping and swelling in your lower legs or worsened pain after sitting or standing for a long time, make varicose vein removal a priority.”

So, how does Fox Vein and Laser Experts remove varicose and spider veins safely and effectively?

Spider veins typically require more precise treatments, like laser treatments, ambulatory phlebectomy direct injections, which in turn seals the veins. Varicose veins often require a more robust approach. Foam sclerotherapy for example, sticks to the walls of the vein on the treated area. This allows the vein lining to become inflamed and to gradually seal shut.  Venaseal is where a crazy glue is injected into the veins which causes the veins to seal shut.  Endovenous laser is where a laser is placed inside the vein that heats the vein and closes it off.  Clarivein is where a wire is placed inside the vein to irritate the vein lining and then a solution is injected which causes the vein to scar shut. Phlebectomies are used in some instances to remove tortuous ropey unsightly veins.  This is where extremely tiny incisions are made and the vein is sealed shut.  All of these procedures in turn diminish the blood flow past the treatment area. This allows varicose veins to be absorbed by the body.

Call us today for your vein removal consultation to learn about the many treatment options for vein removal and vein treatment!




Fox Vein Experts
2699 Stirling Road Suite 301-302A
Hollywood, FL 33312
Phone: (954) 289-3002

Pembroke Pines


Fox Vein Experts
603 N Flamingo Rd Suite 365
Pembroke Pines, FL 33028
Phone: 954-627-1045