14 doctors weighed in:
What are varicose veins and spider veins like?
14 doctors weighed in

Dr. Steven Zimmet
Aesthetic Medicine
8 doctors agree
In brief: Spider & varicose
Varicose veins are bulging blue veins larger than 3 mm in diameter, almost always found on the legs.
Spider veins are red, blue or purple veins on the surface of the skin, up to 1 mm in diameter. They commonly occur on the legs and face, and may be seen elsewhere.

In brief: Spider & varicose
Varicose veins are bulging blue veins larger than 3 mm in diameter, almost always found on the legs.
Spider veins are red, blue or purple veins on the surface of the skin, up to 1 mm in diameter. They commonly occur on the legs and face, and may be seen elsewhere.
Dr. Steven Zimmet
Dr. Steven Zimmet
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Dr. Ted King
Phlebology
5 doctors agree
In brief: A range
They range in size from 0.
1 mm to as much as 2 cm or more in size. Spider veins vary in color based on where they are in the skin. The brightest red ones sit on top of the skin. The deeper they are in the skin, the bluer they become. As they become larger and greener, they are called reticular veins. The are under the skin. Larger and squigglier veins are varicose veins.

In brief: A range
They range in size from 0.
1 mm to as much as 2 cm or more in size. Spider veins vary in color based on where they are in the skin. The brightest red ones sit on top of the skin. The deeper they are in the skin, the bluer they become. As they become larger and greener, they are called reticular veins. The are under the skin. Larger and squigglier veins are varicose veins.
Dr. Ted King
Dr. Ted King
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Dr. Joel Gotvald
Surgery - Vascular
2 doctors agree
In brief: Varicose Spider Vein
Spider veins are the very small thread sized veins below 1mm located within the skin and are usually red or purple.
Varicose veins are the larger blue bulging veins that are serpentine looking, often looking worm-like, located beneath the skin, usually > 3mm. Small blue or purple variocse veins in the range of 1-3mm are referred to as reticular veins. Varicose veins are the most serious of these.

In brief: Varicose Spider Vein
Spider veins are the very small thread sized veins below 1mm located within the skin and are usually red or purple.
Varicose veins are the larger blue bulging veins that are serpentine looking, often looking worm-like, located beneath the skin, usually > 3mm. Small blue or purple variocse veins in the range of 1-3mm are referred to as reticular veins. Varicose veins are the most serious of these.
Dr. Joel Gotvald
Dr. Joel Gotvald
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Dr. John Landi
Phlebology
1 doctor agrees
In brief: Several treatments
Varicose veins are due to leaking(refluxing) valves in the saphenous system and spider veins could be due to leaking valves or simply to aging, genetics or pregnancies.
The treatment for each varies - laser closure and microphlebectomies for vv and sclerotherapy for spider veins. You should see a vein specialist for a full venous evaluation with a venous reflux ultrasound.

In brief: Several treatments
Varicose veins are due to leaking(refluxing) valves in the saphenous system and spider veins could be due to leaking valves or simply to aging, genetics or pregnancies.
The treatment for each varies - laser closure and microphlebectomies for vv and sclerotherapy for spider veins. You should see a vein specialist for a full venous evaluation with a venous reflux ultrasound.
Dr. John Landi
Dr. John Landi
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