Age Spots & Spider Veins
Spider veins, also known as telangiectasias, are small, thin blood vessels visible beneath the skin. They appear most commonly on the face and legs, and may look like a series of lines, tree branches or spider webs. Spider veins are caused by a variety of factors, including heredity, pregnancy and weight gain. Some people experience painful symptoms such as aching, burning, swelling and cramping from spider veins, while others are simply bothered by their appearance.
Treatment for spider veins can be done through traditional sclerotherapy or through more advanced and minimally invasive laser procedures. Laser treatment for spider veins offers patients:
- Fewer side effects
- Less trauma
- Shorter treatment time
- Shorter recovery time
- Minimal downtime
Age spots, also known as brown spots, liver spots and solar lentigines, are a common sign of aging. Flat, oval areas of pigmentation, age spots tend to appear on parts of the body, such as the face, hands, arms, shoulders and feet, that are exposed to the sun. Most common in people older than 40, they can be freckle-sized or more than a half-inch in length, and range in color from light brown to black. When age spots are grouped together, they appear even larger.
Causes Of Age Spots
Although age spots are usually caused by accumulated exposure to the sun’s ultraviolet (UV) light, they may also be the result of using tanning beds/lamps; trauma or injury; or genetic predisposition. People with light skin are more likely to develop age spots, as are those with a history of frequent sunburn or sun exposure.
Diagnosis Of Age Spots
True age spots are harmless and do not require treatment. If what is thought to be an age spot appears irregular, however, a biopsy may be performed to ensure that it is not malignant. Spots with the following characteristics should be evaluated by a physician:
- Dark pigmentation
- Unusual combination of colors
- Rapidly increasing in size
In addition, spots that are itchy, red or sensitive, or that bleed, should be checked for malignancy.
Treatment Options For Age Spots
Although age spots are not medically dangerous, many people who develop them find them aesthetically unappealing. Treatments to remove age spots or make them less prominent include the following:
- Bleaching creams
- Laser skin resurfacing
- Chemical peels