Visible veins on your legs

Varicose Veins - Ballantyne dermatologist

The Ballantyne dermatologist in Charlotte does not treat varicose veins, but we would like to offer some clarification regarding the interchangeable use of the terms Spider veins, and Varicose veins. Many people will use the terms interchangeably, but they are technically not the same. Millions of American adults will develop varicose veins in their lifetime. Just as many, if not more will suffer from spider veins.

Vein size makes a difference

Varicose veins are bulging veins that are greater that 3mmin diameter on the legs. They often have a twisted, cord-like appearance beneath the skin, the protruding is caused by venous reflux disease. Varicose veins are normally located within deeper layers of the skin according to Ballantyne dermatologist.

In contrast, spider veins are typically much smaller, commonly 1 millimeter or less in diameter. Spider are so called, because they often look like spider webbing. The veins are superficial, 1 to 3mm in diameter, found primarily on the legs. They are usually closely associated with capillaries. This is why they usually develop very close to the skin surface, and are usually bright red or blue. Varicose veins primarily occur on the legs, thighs and feet. Spider veins commonly occur in the same areas, but they can also appear on the face, neck, chest, or back.


Because they are superficial, spider veins typically do not cause pain or any other negative symptoms. The biggest problem with spider veins is that most people find them disfiguring and unappealing according to Ballantyne dermatologist. However, varicose veins are commonly associated with itching, burning, pain, or swelling of the surrounding tissues. If varicose veins go untreated, the condition progressively gets worse over time.

Treatment for varicose veins and spider veins

The American Academy of Dermatology recommends the following treatment options for eliminating unwanted veins:

  • Sclerotherapy is the targeted injection of a specific medication into an unwanted vein. This produces immediate and irreversible injury of the vein without damaging the surrounding tissues and skin. Over several treatments, the veins will no longer become visible.
  • Laser Treatment is a great option for getting rid of spider veins. Laser light treatments are an ideal method for treating spider veins of the face, neck, chest, and back.

Skin care and treatments from dermatologists in the Ballantyne area

Although we do not treat varicose veins, the doctors at Dermatology Specialists of Charlotte carry a reputation for high quality, innovative skin treatments, and cosmetic dermatology in a caring and professional environment. Dr. Nixon is a board certified Charlotte dermatologist whose dedication, experience, and knowledge will provide the best possible treatment for your skin, hair, and reliable cosmetic dermatology concerns.

Dermatology Specialists of Charlotte also offers medical, reliable cosmetic dermatology, and surgical dermatology; including removal of skin cancer. We provide a full range of cosmetic offerings such as skin tightening, fat reduction, chemical peels, Botox:registered: treatments, microdermabrasion, and more. We provide treatment for both adult and pediatric patients. Call our office today for a skin care evaluation and analysis of your sun damaged skin, or any other skin condition.


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