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What does the color of a varicose vein indicate?

What can you tell by the color of a varicose vein? I have varicose veins on my legs and they appear purplish.

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Doctors Answers (5)

In general, the color of a vein is due to the degree of partial oxygenation with very small fine spider veins at the surface appearing red and the larger deeper varicose veins having more of a blue color. Purple veins would typically be between these two extremes, with purple more likely for large spider veins (telangiectasias) and possibly superficial reticular and segments of varicose veins close to the skin surface.

The color of a varicose or spider vein may vary depending on the level of oxygenation. More oxygenated veins will appear more reddish and less oxygenated veins more bluish. The difference in color has no clinical significance and does not affect treatment choices.

The actual vein itself is almost white. Veins carry darker deoxygenated blood back to the heart. When you develop varicose veins the veins become dilated and thinner. The blood is more visible and hence the blue appearance. They can also look greenish.

It is size mostly. Varicose veins are filled with de-oxygenated blood .Hemoglobin is the principle pigment (color) generating part of the blood. There are numerous colors (pigments) in the hemoglobin. Red and blue are the easiest to see, so that is what you mostly see. Tiny veins may look red, especially when they have thin walls. Larger veins look purple, and when they get very large you can see some of the green pigments.

That's a normal color for varicose vein.

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