We’ve already talked about varicose veins and spider veins in the past and have agreed they are both cosmetic as well as medical problems. But there are different types of abnormalities seen in veins and you might not be familiar with them all.
With that in mind, let us introduce you to Reticular Veins. Reticular veins can cause health problems and be painful, just like their counterparts, the infamous varicose vein. Here’s everything you should know about reticular veins, from identification, treatment, through to prevention.
What are Reticular Veins?
When you see small, dilated veins around 1mm to 3mm in diameter with a bluish to greenish colouration, those are most likely reticular veins. With that measurement in mind, a good way to define it is that it is bigger than a spider vein but smaller than a varicose vein.
They are often called “feeder veins” when associated with spider veins. This type of abnormal vein can be found commonly on the legs and the face.
Cause of Reticular Veins
Reticular veins, in essence, are very similar to varicose veins and spider veins, which is why it is not mentioned as often. Like the other two, weak or damaged valves in the veins are the main culprits. Normal valves should be leading blood back to the heart, creating one-way traffic.
But for leaky valves, an amount escapes back, creating accumulation, which then leads to the development of engorged veins.
Risk Factors Involved in Reticular Vein Development
There are various risk factors involved in the occurrence of reticular veins. Some of them include the following.
– Age: As a person gets older, the vein elasticity grows weaker
– Heredity: There’s a chance you’ll develop reticular veins sometime in your life when your family has a history of having one
– Certain Medical Conditions: In instances when there’s increased abdominal pressure, such as when having abdominal tumours, chronic constipation, and the like, it can increase likelihood of reticular vein formation
– Vein surgery in the past or skin injury
– Obesity: Having excess weight puts additional pressure on the leg veins
– Standing, sitting, or being immobile for long periods
– Pregnancy: As the uterus grows larger to accommodate the fetus and blood volume increases, the veins tend to become enlarged
Signs and Symptoms of Reticular Veins
As mentioned previously, reticular veins can mostly be identified visually because their size. There are times when identification can be tricky as some lie a little deeper under the top layers of the skin. They are usually found near the area where spider veins are, but they can be confused with varicose veins.
This confusion arises from the fact that reticular veins share varicose vein-like characteristics, such as a ropey appearance.
– pain and discomfort in the legs,
– itchiness in a given location,
– a burning sensation at the enlarged vein’s location
The CEAP classification is a more definitive way of assessment, as well as measuring the gravity of the matter. To better assess the situation, it is a must to visit a vein specialist.
Treatment Plan for Reticular Veins
With the advancement of technology, fortunately there are a variety of ways that reticular veins can be treated. There are plenty of non-surgical procedures that can be employed, such as sclerotherapy and a lot more.
Of course, a trained medical provider should be discussing these options with you, taking into consideration your unique case and the various options.
How to Prevent Them
Now that we know the risk factors associated with reticular veins, we are in a better place to prevent and treat. An active lifestyle, exercise, adequate rest, and healthy diet are just a few ways that you can ward off reticular veins from ever occurring.
Compression stockings are also advisable when you’re at risk and when the vein specialist advises you to use them.
A Treatment Option in Melbourne for Reticular Veins
Should you wish to know more or seek reticular vein treatments, our accommodating professionals at VeinCare are more than willing to extend a hand. Contact us today and let’s talk about your vein health further.