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Spider Veins on Face

Updated on January 22, 2011

Spider veins on face is a very common skin problem but can also be very distressing for sufferers. Medically known as telangectasia, this condition is characterized by a network of small blue and red veins that are visible through the skin. They are common on the legs as well as the face and are usually found around the cheeks and nose. Spider veins usually develop from around the age of 30 onwards, with about half of all people aged 50 or over suffering from spider veins, although they can start much earlier and are especially common in women.

Red spider veins on face are not usually dangerous but they can be unsightly, particularly if they cover a large area of the skin. Sometimes spider veins will cause symptoms such as an itching or burning sensation in which case they should be evaluated by your doctor as this may be indicative of a blood blockage problem somewhere in your circulatory system. Usually people just want to treat spider veins on face for cosmetic reasons and there are a number of preventative steps and treatments to try.

Causes of Spider Veins on Face

So what is the cause of spider veins on face? These veins become visible when the valves inside that prevent the backflow of blood are weakened. This causes blood to pool in the veins rather than moving towards the heart which makes the vein appear more prominent. This weakening can be caused by several factors and is often hereditary.

The presence of spider veins seems to be linked to elevated levels of the female hormone, estrogen, leading them to be more common in women during pregnancy (which also increases the risk of suffering them due to increased blood flow) and other times of hormonal change such as puberty and the menopause. Taking birth control pills may also be a cause of spider vein on face starting to form.

Other causes of spider veins on face include excessive exposure to sunlight and cold, being overweight, lack of exercise. Smoking and excessive intake of alcohol may also cause spider veins or make them worse and there is some evidence that daily exposure to polluted air can have the same effect.

How to get rid of Spider veins on Face

Spider vein laser treatment

There are a number of possible treatments for spider veins on the face which may vary in success depending on the individual and the extent of the problem. The first steps to avoiding varicose veins from appearing in the first place and to stop the ones you already have from worsening is to make a number of small changes to your lifestyle. If you are overweight, simply reducing your excess weight will help. Taking regular aerobic exercise will also help to improve your blood flow and can minimize spider veins on face. You should also take steps to avoid daily excessive exposure to sunlight and always use a sun block lotion on your face.

There are spider vein creams available that you may want to try on your face before resorting to one of the more invasive treatments. These creams help to coagulate the blood that is pooled in the veins, encouraging the blood to flow back towards the heart. Creams usually have to be used regularly for at least a few weeks before an improvement is seen but many people have had success using them for treatment of spider veins on face.

Sclerotherapy is one of the most common surgical treatments for spider veins on the face. In this procedure the doctor will inject a chemical into the vein that causes it to seal shut. This stops blood from flowing through the vein, so its appearance will fade within a few weeks. Usually a few separate treatments are required to make the veins vanish completely. There are sometimes some minor side effects such as swelling and bruises around the area of treatment. This treatment is most effective for larger veins and may not always be suitable for spider veins on face.

Another popular treatment is spider vein laser treatment. This technique uses a laser to fire intense pulses of light at the affected area. This causes the vein to fade and eventually disappear. There may be some pain associated with the procedure and there is usually some swelling or discolored skin that will be temporary. This is considered one of the most effective treatments for spider veins on the face.

Treatments will generally cost between $100 to $400 per treatment session and most people will need between two and six treatments before the veins disappear completely. You can discuss possible options for spider vein on face treatment with your doctor or you may wish to visit a specialist laser vein removal clinic.


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      Raffi Dishakjian 7 years ago

      Unlike leg veins, the main cause for spider veins on the face, is not venous reflux, but the breakdown of collagen in the veins. On the other hands, the most important contributing factor in the appearance of facial veins is overexposure to the sun, especially true with fair-skinned people.