Though generally harmless, hair-thin blemishes, known as spider veins, can cause some to want to cover up even in the heat. Treating spider veins is rarely a medical necessity (though some seek treatment to relieve the aching the veins can cause), but for those who want it, spider vein-free skin is just a zap away.
No one knows why some people develop spider veins and others don’t, but genetics, the hormone estrogen and possibly the hormone progesterone are thought to play a role. Spider veins appear more frequently in women than in men, and are particularly common in pregnant women and those taking oral contraceptives or hormone-replacement therapy.
Getting rid of spider veins is safe and easy. Sclerotherapy, the gold-standard treatment for spider veins, involves injecting a saline solution or detergent into the veins, causing them to clump together or clot and become less apparent. “Anybody who has veins they don’t like is a good candidate (for sclerotherapy) because it’s an incredibly safe, easy procedure,” says Dr. Lisa Donofrio, an assistant clinical professor of dermatology at Yale University School of Medicine.
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