Many people are embarrassed by the appearance of spider veins on the face or legs. Spider veins are actually dilated or stretched blood vessels that appear on the legs, not "broken" blood vessels, as is commonly thought. Their precise cause is unknown, but it is thought that heredity, excessive standing, weight gain, hormonal changes and pregnancy may be some of the causes.
Varicose veins and spider veins develop more often in women than in men. They increase in frequency with age. An estimated 30% to 60% of adults have varicose veins or spider veins.