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About 50 percent of women and 40 percent of men in the United States live with from some type of vascular problem and may be in need of treatment. The fact is, varicose veins and spider veins affect about half of people ages 50 years and older.

Varicose veins are enlarged veins that can be seen as red, blue or even as flesh-colored. They sometimes look like swollen thick cords and appear to be twisting and bulging on the surface of the skin. Varicose veins are most often found on the inside of the legs, thigh area or the backs of the calves, but can show up in other areas as well. During pregnancy, varicose veins can appear in the vaginal area as well as the buttocks.

The fact is, Spider veins are often red or blue and can look like tree branches or spider webs. They are like varicose veins but usually smaller. They are also closer to the surface of the skin than the thicker varicose veins. Spider veins as a matter of fact can appear on the face, especially around the nose area as well as the legs. They can cover either a very small or very large area of skin. There are a lot of sites on the web that boast facts about natural cures for spider veins and facts about curing varicose veins naturally, sometimes people will try these avenues before seeing a medical professional 

Varicose veins can be caused by weak or damaged valves in the veins. The heart pumps oxygen-rich blood and nutrients to the entire body through the arterial system. Veins then carry the blood back to the heart. As your leg muscles squeeze, they push blood back to the heart from your lower body. It’s a fact that the arterial system works hard to move the blood through your body but sometimes it’s hindered by damaged or weekend valves causing varicose veins or spider veins to occur.

One-way valves inside the veins open and let the blood flow through, and then they shut to keep blood from flowing backward. If the valves are weak or damaged, blood can back up and pool in your veins. This causes the veins to swell and the backed-up blood makes the veins bigger, if the vein walls become weak they lose their normal elasticity. This makes the walls of the veins wider and sometimes also causing the valve flaps to separate. When this occurs the veins swell and frequently twist as a result of trying to squeeze into their normal space. These are varicose veins.

Spider veins can be caused by several factors, most frequently by the backup of blood. They can also be caused by hormone changes and hormone replacement, exposure to the sun, obesity, birth control pills, standing for long periods of time, heredity and injuries just to name a few.

Typically your doctor will perform a physical exam and look at your legs while you’re in a standing position or they may have you sitting with your legs hanging off the edge of the table. They usually ask you about your symptoms, and if you’re having any pain around the area of the varicose veins or spider veins. He or She may request other tests to confirm their findings or to rule out other conditions that may be problematic. Two tests are typically used when diagnosing varicose veins and or spider veins.

Although your general practitioner may be able to give you a preliminary diagnosis for varicose veins or spider veins, there are several types of specialist you can see as well.

You may ask your regular doctor if he would recommend one type of specialist over another based on his initial assessment of your condition. Since all insurance plans are different, it might be a good idea to find out if your insurance provider only covers a particular specialist and go from there.

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