Spider Veins on Legs and Face

Unsightly leg and facial spider veins – those small, unsightly clusters of red or purple veins that usually appear on the thighs, calves, ankles and occasionally the face, can be a problem for millions of men and women the world over. The problem affects a wide range of age groups, skin types and lifestyles. While they may not be medical emergencies, most would rather be rid of these unattractive distractions to their natural beauty.

Spider veins are small, thin superficial capillaries that lie close to the surface of the skin. They can look like tree branches or a spider web with their short jagged lines. They are connected to the larger venous system though they are not an essential part of it as they do not actually carry blood to the heart. Spider veins can be found on both the legs and the face and can cover both very small and very large areas of skin.

Spider veins form when excess blood backs up in the blood stream. The excess blood creates pressure. The body releases the pressure by creating new veins on the skin’s surface. The primary problem with spider veins is their unsightly appearance, but they can also cause aching, swelling, burning.

No one knows exactly the cause of spider veins, but several factors including heredity are believed to cause a person to be more likely to develop them. Oral contraceptives, hormone changes and therapy, sun exposure and the natural aging process also may contribute to their development. Spider veins may also be related to rosacea, and other trauma to the skin or may be heredity.

Light and laser technology offer excellent results in reducing spider veins and facial redness.

There are two options for eliminating spider veins and flushing of the face

Laser Treatment
Lasers are an excellent modality for spot treating larger facial veins. Our laser delivers precise dosages of energy to each vein, with minimal risk to surrounding the skin. During treatment, light energy is delivered through a special hand piece directly to the targeted vein. This energy is absorbed, causing thermal coagulation of the blood vessel. Over a short period of time the vessel is then absorbed by the body. One treatment is sometimes sufficient, but multiple treatments may be necessary.

Intense Pulsed Light Therapy
Also known as IPL or Photo Facial, this treatment offers superior results when treating a whole network of tiny facial veins and the associated flushed look of the skin. There is usually no downtime with this procedure, and it typically requires 4 to 6 treatments. People with mild to severe rosacea really appreciate the outcome, noting an 80 to 90% overall reduction in facial redness.

Most experience little if any discomfort at the treatment site. The sensation and the degree of discomfort varies with each person. When pulses of light are delivered some patients feel a mild pinching or stinging sensation. Similar to the light snap of a rubber band. No local anesthesia or pain medication is typically required, however some patients may prefer to use a topical anesthetic when sensitive areas are treated.

Typically, 3 to 6 treatments offer the best results; Depending on severity, clients usually notice significant improvement within one to two treatments. Potential for maximum long-term resolutions increases after another 1 – 2 sessions.

Once a vein or vessel has been destroyed, it will not return. However the treatment is not able to stop the development of more veins in the future. Patients who have had laser or IPL could certainly see new facial veins over time, especially those who continue on with unprotected sun exposure. Sunscreen is recommended for everyone, and it can be preventative for people prone to facial veins.