These are two conditions that affect many older people, but the terms can be confusing. If you have started to notice veins developing on your body, you should take a look at the two conditions and how they differ from each other. Spider & varicose veins are similar in a lot of ways, but they also have their differences.
Spider & Varicose Veins: What are their Functions?
Veins are blood vessels that are responsible for returning blood from all parts of your body to your heart. When different body parts receive blood, they release carbon dioxide and waste products. The heart then receives this oxygen-poor blood and returns it to the lungs, where carbon dioxide is removed and more oxygen is received.
Veins also help by storing unused blood. When your body is resting, only some of the entire blood in your body is actually circulating. The remaining blood stays in the veins until it is needed to carry additional oxygen. The storage capacity of the vein is because of the vein’s elasticity.
Varicose veins normally make their presence felt as bluish, bulging cords just under the skin’s surface and almost always are located on the feet or legs. These twisted veins are swollen and can be surrounded by a network of spider veins.
Varicose veins are an abnormal condition caused by the failure of tiny, one-way valves found within the veins that normally maintain blood flow to the heart. When these valves fail, blood does not move properly to the heart; instead it pools and swells, forming varicose veins. This disorder is very common, especially among females who are obese, have a family history or do not exercise. They are also found more commonly among women who are pregnant.
Facts About Spider & Varicose Veins
* Veins transport blood requiring oxygen back to the heart
* Varicose veins can cause discomfort or leg ulcerations
* Varicose veins are due to failing vein valves or weakened vein walls
* Veins are usually not dangerous
* Spider veins are formed in capillaries – tiny blood vessels, one blood cell in thickness
Differences in Spider & Varicose Veins
Varicose veins stand out from spider veins because they are much larger. They are visible, and bulge and protrude from the skin. They are also dilated, which is defined by a diameter of more than 4 millimeters.
Spider veins can also be seen on the skin’s surface, and may appear as fine lines, or starburst clusters, or even a webby maze. They are not normally palpable or felt by touching like varicose veins. Spider veins are most commonly found in the feet, ankles and thighs.
With locations in Hollywood and Pembroke Pines, Fox Vein Experts offers a number of non-surgical vein treatments for both spider & varicose veins. During a consultation at one of our offices, our team of venous experts can help you determine which treatment is best for treating your problematic veins. Contact us today to schedule your appointment to learn more.