Varicose Veins vs. Spider Veins: Main Differences

Blog Post
By BASS Vein Center
Varicose Veins vs. Spider Veins: Main Differences
December 30, 2020

Many people who have varicose veins also have smaller, thinner veins on their legs known as spider veins. While there are similarities between the two, varicose veins and spider veins are not the same thing Here are some of their similarities and differences.

How Are Varicose Veins and Spider Veins the Same?                               

Both of these vein conditions are caused by the same main issue: damaged valves in the blood vessels. When the valves in the blood vessels no longer work properly, the blood that is supposed to move through them can no longer move forward toward the heart. Instead, the blood flows backward, causing it to pool, which enlarges the vein. As a result, larger and thicker varicose veins develop.

Spider veins also form because of poorly-functioning blood vessel valves. They are more likely to show up if you have one or more risk factors such as:

  • A family history of spider veins
  • Overweight
  • Pregnancy
  • Going through menopause

How Are Spider Veins and Varicose Veins Different?

Spider veins and varicose veins differ in their appearance. Varicose veins are large, unsightly, swollen blood vessels that have a twisted appearance. They show up just beneath the skin and are often red, blue, or purple. Varicose veins can also be very painful.

Spider veins are much smaller and thinner in appearance. Although they are not as much of a problem visually, many people remove them strictly because of cosmetic reasons. Spider veins do not cause pain for most people. 

What Are the Warning Signs for Varicose Veins and Spider Veins?

Now that we have established that the main differences between varicose veins and spider veins are appearance and pain, it is time to look at the signs and symptoms of these conditions.

If you are experiencing any or all of the following symptoms, you may have either spider veins, varicose veins, or both. Symptoms include:

  • A throbbing, itching, or burning sensation in the legs
  • Muscle cramps
  • Swelling in the calves or around the ankles
  • A heavy or tired feeling in the legs

Keep in mind that while most varicose veins are easy to see, it is possible to have damaged veins that are not easily visible. If you are experiencing pain and discomfort in your legs that doesn’t go away with rest or elevation or pain that cannot be explained, you should consider making an appointment with one of our vein specialists hereat BASS Vein Center.

Why You Should Contact BASS Vein Center

We offer five different vein treatment options that will provide relief from the pain and discomfort associated with varicose veins and spider veins. These treatments also eliminate cosmetic issues related to these common conditions. Our certified team of vein specialists and technicians have been serving the East Bay Area residents for more than 20 years. During that time, we have treated over 24,000patients using effective vein treatments.

Varicose Vein and Spider Vein Treatment Near Me

People living with varicose veins and spider veins can learn more about treatment options offered in the East Bay area by visiting BASS Vein Center. Our certified vein specialists offer several varicose vein treatment services that can help you live your life pain-free. Contact us today to make an appointment and find out more. 

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