Procedures for Removing Spider Veins

Spider veins are small broken veins that are close to the surface of the skin.


  1. Spider veins are small broken veins that are close to the surface of the skin. They can be found anywhere on the body, but are most commonly found on the legs or the face. They are red or blue in color, and resemble tree branches or spider webs. People often seek to have them removed for cosmetic reasons, but there are ma y reasons to seek vein treatment for spider veins. Left untreated, they can lead to blood clots, aches and pains, and varicose veins. Procedures for removing spider veins are non-invasive and have a high success rate.

    The most common treatment is called Sclerotherapy. An injection of irritant chemicals is placed in affected veins. Several veins can be treated at one time. Small veins rarely need a repeated treatment, although that is a possibility. The injection causes the vein to collapse on itself and the walls eventually heal together, sealing off the vein. The result is not immediate, and it can take two to six months for veins to completely clear up. The procedure can be completed at a vein clinic or a hospital, and varicose veins treatment takes approximately one and a half hours.

    While the patient is standing, the surgeon will mark all injection sites. Injections are given while the patient is lying down. A very small needle is used, so the procedure is not painful. A mild pinprick is usually felt. Some patients report a burning sensation at the injection site, but that goes away within a few seconds. Immediately after the injections are all given, tight fitting compression stockings are placed on the leg. The patient then walks around for thirty minutes. Compression stockings are worn for three to six days to expedite healing and help with proper circulation.

    Common side effects include bruising, swelling, brown spots and lumps that will fade in time, and possible matting. Matting refers to fine blood vessels that form a network after treatment. Rare side effects may include an allergic reaction to the chemicals, inflammation, ulcers, irritation to surrounding veins, and tissue damage, if the solution is accidentally injected into an artery.

    Other procedures for getting rid of spider veins include laser treatments and electrodessication. Laser treatments destroy the veins with a high-intensity light beam. Electrodessication seals off spider veins with an electrical current. The doctor will discuss these options in complete detail to determine which one is right for each patient. Contributing factors for choosing a procedure may be age, location of the veins, weight, working conditions, and medications or other medical conditions.