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What Is the Difference between Varicose Veins and Spider Veins?

Many of our patients have questions when they first visit our offices in Annapolis, Chevy Chase, Columbia, and Towson, Maryland. Some include the following frequently asked questions…

“What is the difference between varicose veins and spider veins”?
Both are signs of vein disease. Varicose veins are usually painful, bulging veins visible to the eye, while spider veins are thin, blue-red-green veins that look like little threadlike veins on your skin’s surface.

“What procedure do you typically recommend for varicose veins?”
MVP recommends a minimally invasive RF (radiofrequency) ablation that takes about an hour in the office and lets you return to normal activities the same day.

“What treatment do you most recommend for spider veins?”
Spider veins or reticular veins could be isolated on the skin surface or may a sign of a deeper vein issue. Sclerotherapy, a quick medical procedure, injects a sclerosant (liquid) into the vein, causing the blood vessel lining to collapse, and the vein to disappear.

“Do you accept most insurance coverage?”
MVP accepts most major insurance providers for varicose vein procedures, including Medicare and BC/BS Federal.

Read more Frequently Asked Questions.

To schedule an appointment or to discuss your leg pain with an MVP board-certified surgeon, please call 877-303-8346 (VEIN) or book online at

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