Separating the Truth from the Fiction of Spider Vein Removal
Visible veins below your skin are common! Because spider and varicose veins have been something people have suffered with for decades, there are plenty of myths surrounding the unsightly vein lines that develop on the body. At Cosmetic Laser Centers, we’re here to tackle those myths and help syphon out the truth for you so you can discover what you can do about them.
Myth: Spider veins and varicose veins are the same thing.
Spider veins and varicose veins are different forms of a medical condition that causes weak or damaged valves and interrupted blood flow. The condition, venous insufficiency, shows up as either spider veins or varicose veins, depending on the severity of it. Spider veins and varicose veins can appear similar, but do present different symptoms and are treated differently.
Spider veins are small veins that appear just below the surface of the skin and are caused by one or a variety of the following factors: lifestyle, heredity, history of blood clots, prolonged standing, and hormones among others. They aren’t typically painful, but many people choose to get them treated because of cosmetic reasons. Varicose veins are larger than spider veins, and can be painful. These veins are enlarged and twisted, which is why they are more uncomfortable or painful than spider veins.
Some people choose to ignore their varicose veins and spider veins, but if varicose veins are too painful, a doctor may need to be consulted as this can lead to more serious issues like blood clots or ulcers. Spider veins can be left alone, but because they are a blue or red color and often highly visible on your legs, many people decide to receive a cosmetic treatment to remove them or minimize their appearance.
Myth: Spider veins are never painful.
Just because varicose veins are most likely to be the ones you need treated does not mean that spider veins are never painful. Spider veins can be uncomfortable, and even feel like they are burning. If they do hurt, they may also be raised a bit more than usual, and you should talk to your doctor, as this could be a sign of a more serious underlying problem.
Myth: Spider veins aren’t dangerous.
Spider veins are a product of dysfunctioning valves in your vascular system. When minor, they typically aren’t dangerous, but over time those blockages in your vascular valves can be extremely dangerous, especially when paired with a blood clot.
Treatment options are able to rid your body of the dysfunctioning veins and re-route the blood to flow through healthier veins, lowering your risk of blood clots, bleeding, blood pooling, bruising, swelling, and other symptoms.
If you have spider veins, talk to your doctor about the severity of your venous insufficiency and the potential effects on your vascular system, including potential threats to your heart.
Myth: Sclerotherapy is the only treatment for spider veins.
There are a few different treatment options for spider veins.
Spider veins can be managed at home with compression socks and stockings, but they can also be treated to make them go away.
The first treatment to get rid of spider veins is intense pulsed light (IPL). IPL is a photorejuvenation procedure that treats the damaged skin with noninvasive light that doesn’t disrupt the skin’s surface. The small blood vessels of spider veins absorb the light, causing them to heat up and shut down. Eventually, the blood vessels are absorbed back into the body and won’t show under your skin’s surface. IPL is usually used to treat facial spider veins.
Sclerotherapy is the other option. This treatment has been used to treat spider veins for more than 80 years and has proven to be highly effective. Sclerotherapy treatment involves the doctor using a needle to inject a solution into the affected veins, causing them to close, and the blood to reroute through other, healthier veins. This treatment is fairly quick and requires no down time. It can usually be effective with only one treatment as well; spider veins will then fade after several weeks.
Myth: Spider veins come back after sclerotherapy.
Sclerotherapy treatment for spider veins causes those affected and treated veins to close and disappear, but it does not treat the underlying cause of the spider vein development. So, while the treated veins cannot come back, there is still the possibility of new spider veins developing in the same area over time.
Treating spider veins in a similar manner, IPL also has no guarantee of spider veins not developing in other veins in the future. If you’re having valve issues with your blood vessels, causing spider veins, sclerotherapy and IPL don’t treat those underlying valve issues. However, these therapies do improve the look of your skin, particularly on your legs and face.
Myth: Spider vein treatment is too expensive.
Sclerotherapy is the less expensive treatment for spider veins, when compared with IPL, which can be more expensive and require several treatments. We think you’ll find that the cost of spider vein treatments in Pittsburgh, PA, and surrounding areas are well worth the results.
Because laser treatment can take several sessions before you get the results you’re looking for, Sclerotherapy is typically a much more cost effective option, if you’re a good candidate for it. IPL, however, works better for some people or spider vein locations. Getting spider veins treated to prevent more serious issues in the future is attainable and necessary. Set up a consultation with us to learn about which treatment is right for you.
Myth: Spider vein treatment is hard to find.
If spider veins are common, we’re here to make seeking help common, and accessible as well. You don’t have to live with red, blue, and purple veins on your legs and face.
You can easily find treatment for your spider veins right here at Cosmetic Laser Centers in Pittsburgh, or nearby in Warrendale, PA. At Cosmetic Laser Centers we offer both Sclerotherapy and Intense Pulse Light laser treatment for your face and lower extremities, the most common places to find spider veins.
Now is the time to take back your glowing skin. Call us today at 724-935-4200 to get started!