The Difference Between Spider Veins and Varicose Veins

Our blood is taken back, to the heart from all over the body, through veins. You may experience or observe prominent, twisted pattern of veins bulging out of the skin. This is not a normal condition of veins.

There two abnormalities of veins which can appear on the skin ( Varicose and spider veins). The differences between a spider and varicose veins are discussed below. Before that, we should know what they actually are.

Difference Between Spider Veins and Varicose Veins

Spider Veins

Small twisted purple, blue and red colored veins which are usually seen in the skin of face and legs are called spider veins. Their spiderweb-like pattern has given them the name of spider veins.

Varicose Veins

Varicose veins are dark blue colored, raised and twisted blood vessels which are swollen in nature. They can be seen in legs mainly.

Symptoms of Spider and Varicose Veins

The spider and varicose veins show symptoms like cramping or aching in legs. You may feel tingling, burning sensation or throbbing in legs. They can often lead to ulceration of the skin which is chronic tissue condition. Problems in muscles, valves of vessels or in the blood cause the bulging of veins which leads to varicose veins. People who do jobs in which they have to stand for a long duration are exposed this problem.

Difference Between Spider Veins and Varicose Veins

Spider veins look like bulged vessels which are caused by trauma, change in any hormone, or due to sun exposure. Varicose veins look like swollen vessels which are caused mainly due to obesity, genetic predisposition, hormone changes and lack of movement.  Spider veins usually appear on face and legs of the sufferer whereas, varicose veins appear on legs mainly.  Varicose veins appear as a more serious condition than spider veins.


Spider veins can be treated by laser therapies or local injections while varicose veins are surgically removed. Doctors advise lifestyle changes to the patient.

Full Comparison Between Spider Veins VS. Varicose Veins – Video Tips

 Image Source: iStockphoto

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