The Circulation has talked a lot about spider veins and varicose veins in the past. Both are considered abnormal veins that result from blood not flowing properly throughout our body and back to our heart. So, what is the difference between spider and varicose veins?
Vein Atlanta recently offered an in-depth look at how these two venous insufficiencies differ. Essentially, the main difference is size. While both are commonly found in our lower extremities and visible beneath the skin’s surface, varicose veins are enlarged, swollen veins and spider veins are smaller, web-like vessels. Spider veins are less than one millimeter in diameter, while varicose veins are greater than three millimeters. In addition, varicose veins typically bulge beyond the skin’s surface and can extend up to three feet in length.
Another large differentiator is that, in most cases, spider veins are not dangerous at first. However, they can be a sign of bigger trouble brewing beneath the surface and should be treated early to prevent any further complications. On the other hand, varicose veins can lead to potentially life-threatening conditions such as venous ulcers or deep vein thrombosis if left untreated.
At the Alaska Heart & Vascular Institute’s Vein Clinic, Dr. Richard Anschuetz and his team of highly qualified vascular specialists consider your entire circulatory system and are trained in a number of techniques designed to minimize the pain and appearance of spider or varicose veins.
To learn about treatment and prevention options, visit our Vein Clinic. Or, make an appointment with one of our specialists today by calling 907-563-8346 (VEIN).