Spider Veins, Reticular Veins & Bulging Varicose Veins
1. Thread or ‘spider fine’ veins
Thread or ‘spider fine’ veins are red, blue and green veins that lie very close to the surface. They are not only unsightly, but are an indication of medical concern. Thread veins often occur in response to invisible varicose vein disease, and signal that much more is happening in the deeper leg. A comprehensive evaluation is essential to the initial consultation.
- Sclerotherapy: The Sclerotherapy method entails injecting an agent into the vein that causes the vein to become ‘sticky’. The Varicose Vein (VV) shrinks, and is slowly eaten up by your body.
- Laser / Light therapy: This is an option for facial veins. Not for leg veins.
- Horse chestnut and additional natural remedies are used with various degrees of success.
2. Blue, green reticular veins
Blue, green reticular veins can be found on the top of your hands and feet, as well as your legs.
They are usually associated with leaking valves deeper in the leg. They are often, but not always associated with symptoms of “restless legs”, cramps, heaviness and pain.
Sclerotherapy is effective when combined with tying off (ligation) of the vein. This can be conducted via a Micro-Phlebectomy or the button technique.
3. Bulging varicose veins
Bulging varicose veins are excessively dilated surface veins that are consistently associated with deeper lying varicose veins. Interestingly enough, their size and quantity are not always related to the cramps, pain and discomfort they cause.
- Surgical removal applying micro-surgical techniques
- EVLT (endovenous laser treatment) or EVLA (endovascular laser ablation) is the latest treatment used in first world countries. It is not so much a surgical procedure as an interventional radiological procedure. This technique is done to the groins, thus avoiding formal theatre vein stripping.
- Trendelenburg Vein Stripping: This is the “traditional technique” which popularity is waning due to the development of new, less invasive techniques. It usually requires general anaesthesia, theatre and hospitalisation.
- Sclerotherapy with foam or liquid sclerosant.