Thread Vein Removal in London & UK

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Mentioned only in hushed voices heavy with dread, thread veins affect a significant proportion of adults. This guide should serve to explain what they are and, more importantly, how to get rid of them in an easy and understandable manner. So put your mind at ease and read on!

What is a thread vein and how is it different to a varicose vein?

The first point to be made is that thread veins are not to be confused with varicose veins. The two terms are often used interchangeably, but thread veins present themselves quite differently.

The word ‘varicose’ means swollen and enlarged in the medical context, and describes the condition perfectly. Varicose veins are a natural part of aging, and occur as the valves that dictate blood flow in veins (keeping the blood moving in the right direction) stop functioning properly. The result is enlarged, swollen, veins that are visible as more blood than usual collects between the valves within a vein. ‘Varicose’ is in fact a Greek word meaning ‘grape like’, referring to the purple or blue colouring of the resulting condition. Not a very flattering description, but certainly one that fits the condition! Varicose veins can be harmless, but are also known to become painful, bleed, and associated with complications like leg ulcers.

Unlike the gnarled and large tangles of swollen vessels that form varicose veins, thread veins typically present as a fine web of blue or red vessels on the surface of your skin. While varicose veins tend to stem from obstruction in large veins, thread veins are in fact the result of trauma to a network of very fine blood vessels called capillaries. Thread veins are also usually completely harmless, although they should still be examined by a doctor upon presentation to rule out the small risk of other vascular issues.

Thread veins are also known by a number of other common names:

  • Spider veins
  • Venous flares
  • Broken capillaries
  • Broken veins
  • Surface veins

Who does it affect?

Capillaries form thread veins when exposed to excess pressure, blockage, or injury. They’re more likely to form in people with active jobs who spend a lot of time standing or lifting, which places additional pressure on the vascular system. The likelihood of thread vein formation also increases with age, other vascular complications, and in the event of a family history of thread veins. There are other factors which can contribute, but these are discussed in more detail in the ‘Causes of Thread Veins’ section.

Thread veins tend to affect women more than men, and some statistics suggest that up to 50% of women in the UK will develop some degree of the condition, however the point to be emphasised is that they most often do not cause any health issues.

Causes of Thread Veins »