What is the difference between varicose veins and spider veins?

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What are the differences between varicose veins and spider veins? Which one best describes what I might be suffering from?

A common question we often get at Superior Vein Care.

Varicose Veins

  • Are large bulging veins UNDER the skin, which develop when the valves that direct blood flow back to the heart fail.

  • Blood backwashes down the veins and causes them to dilate and twist. Why this happens is poorly understood, but is mostly do to genetics.

  • Treatment for varicose veins that cause symptoms and impact daily activities are usually covered by private insurers and government payers (Medicare and Medicaid).

Spider Veins

  • Also abnormal veins with failed valves, but they are much smaller and are actually IN the skin layer itself.

  • Are typically red and blue in clusters, thus the name 'spider' veins.

  • Are considered cosmetic and treatment is not covered by insurance.

Insurance Coverage for Varicose Veins - Common Misperception