Varicose Veins, Spider Veins, and Dilated Capillaries
It is estimated that 40% of women have varicose veins or spider veins. Men also develop them, but with a lower frequency. There are many factors that predispose to the development of these unsightly – and often symptomatic – veins, the most important being heredity. They can be inherited from the maternal or paternal side of the family. If someone is predisposed, they can appear as early as the teen years although most often they appear later. In addition, pregnancy, standing occupations, obesity, injury, previous thrombophlebitis, along with other factors may contribute to their development and progression.
What are Varicose Veins?
Varicose veins are enlarged, non-functional, veins that are more than 2 millimeters in width and may exceed 2 centimeters. They may be blue or green or they may appear as protruding, tortuous cords that course under the skin. What distinguishes normal veins from varicose veins is the functioning of the valves that are present in all veins. This is illustrated in the diagram below.
Because the valves in varicose veins do not function normally, varicose veins are most apparent when standing due to their inability to prevent blood from pooling with gravity. Often varicose veins seem to disappear when lying down or with leg elevation.
What are Spider Veins?
Spider veins are enlarged veins less than 2 millimeters in width. They appear deep red, blue, or purple. While often flat, they may protrude, especially when standing. Sclerotherapy is the most effective method for removing spider veins.
What are Dilated Capillaries?
David Green, M.D.
Dr. David Green is a Board Certified Dermatologist in Bethesda, Maryland. Dr. Green specializes in Dermatology, Dermatologic Cosmetic and Laser Surgery, and the treatment of Varicose Veins and vascular disorders.
He is Certified by the American Board of Dermatology, is a Fellow of the American Academy of Dermatology, and a Member of the American Society for Dermatologic Surgery, and the American College of Phlebology. He treats patients from Maryland, Washington DC, Virginia and throughout the Mid Atlantic region.
Dr. David Green proudly offers services in his Bethesda, Maryland office.