Vericose veins are primarily caused by dysfunctional valves inside the walls of blood vessels. After your blood distributes oxygen and nutrients to the lower extremities of the body, it becomes deoxygenated and must return in an upward direction back to the heart. The valves inside your veins are supposed to keep the blood from flowing back downwards. When they are weak or non-functional, blood will pool in the legs causing veins to bulge from the skin’s surface.
Spider veins occur from a variety of different causes. There is usually a genetic predisposition. And environmental factors trigger the appearance of spider veins. Examples include: sun exposure, obesity and overeating, sitting or standing for long periods of time. Hormonal changes and birth control pills can also contribute to the appearance of spider veins by weakening the walls of the blood vessels, making them less elastic.
There are different procedures that can be used to get rid of leg veins. However the treatment of choice will depend particularly on how close the veins are to the skin’s surface.
Procedures to remove varicose veins include:
Surgery Is used to remove veins that are close to the skin’s surface. Sclerotherapy, which uses injections of sodium chloride, is typically used to remove deep veins that may be encased by muscle or connective tissue. Laser therapy uses monochromatic light to cause the blood vessels to coagulate so that the body eliminates this non-functional tissue as waste. It is an option that is considered if sclerotherapy does not work.
Because the appearance of leg veins is strongly tied to genetics, there isn’t a reliable way to prevent them. Compression stockings can help to delay the progression of the veins. Also exercise keeps your leg muscles strong so that they can exert pressure on the veins and help push blood in an upward direction.
Removing veins does not damage the circulatory system in any way. To understand this better, think about what happens when you are driving and a particular road is blocked off or inaccessible due to construction. You can still get to your destination using alternative streets. Likewise, blood will travel back to the heart using different veins.
If spider veins are left untreated, the only issue will be of a cosmetic nature. If varicose veins are not treated, complications can result. Your legs can swell. This swelling causes tissues to stretch and possibly break, leading to ulcers. Also blood clots can form inside the veins.
Insurance companies have different policies. But in general they will not pay for procedures to remove leg veins for cosmetic purposes. There needs to be a dire medical necessity in order for insurance to cover the cost of removing leg veins.