We’ve all heard of varicose veins. We’ve all heard of spider veins. But, when we tell a patient here at the Vein Institute of NJ that the unsightly blue line on their leg or thigh is a reticular vein, we get more than a few quizzical looks.
Usually blue or purple in color, reticular veins, like their better known siblings, varicose and spider veins, are a common problem. Smaller – usually about 2mm in diameter – than varicose veins, reticular veins do not protrude above the skin as varicose veins do. They may form areas on the inner part and back of the thighs, the legs and ankles, and occasionally on the face filled with unattractive vein clusters. Their appearance deters many affected women from wearing shorts, skirts, bathing suits or other clothing that reveals areas of the skin where reticular veins are visible.
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Additionally, veins that become reticular may cause pain and discomfort in the surrounding area and can also feed into spider veins, serving as the source of excess blood that fills their dilated venules. Because of this connection, reticular veins are also known as feeder veins, and removing reticular veins can help eliminate spider veins.
Some cases of reticular veins, as with spider veins and varicose veins, ultimately form because a problem within the vein allows blood to flow backward, dilating and twisting the vein. Our top-rated vascular doctors know how to best address the physiology of the veins and their role in the development of vein disorders and will go over this with you during a personal consult.
Fortunately, removal of reticular veins is now a routine procedure performed in a matter of minutes on an outpatient basis. At our Vein Institute of NJ vein treatment centers, we have a range of minimally invasive procedures to provide the best treatment plan for you and your particular vein issue. Be aware that not every facility offering vein care is staffed by qualified physicians, or can offer the full range of advanced treatments that only medical specialists can deliver.
If you have more questions, feel free to contact us at the Vein Institute of NJ in northern New Jersey, where our medical staff is comprised entirely of board certified vascular surgeons.