Q. I have spider veins that I find quite distracting. When I asked my primary care doctor what I could do to get rid of them he suggested a visit to the dermatologist or plastic surgeon. I cannot afford that since my insurance won’t cover it. Do you have any remedies you can suggest that wouldn’t be so expensive?
A. Spider veins (telangiectasia) are networks of tiny blood vessels that become visible under the skin. They are usually red or blue and while not dangerous, can be unsightly.
Dermatologists can inject a salt water solution (hypertonic saline) through a tiny needle into the veins (sclerotherapy). This causes the veins to clot, turn into scar tissue and eventually become less visible.
Another approach is laser “surgery.” A laser beam zaps the veins, but it may not be as effective as sclerotherapy. It can take several months for the redness to disappear.
A far less expensive but unproven approach involves the application of 20% urea cream. We first heard about this from a visitor to our website two years ago:
“I developed a skin condition on my lower leg for which my dermatologist recommended skin cream with 20 percent urea (OTC). The area was near some spider veins, and during the course of treatment the spider veins faded where some of the urea cream got on them.
“I began to cover the entire spider vein area with the urea cream and now they are almost completely gone. Have you heard of using urea cream to treat spider veins?
“The change was really dramatic. I assume it was due to the action of the urea on these superficial veins.”
Since then, we have heard from others that Udderly Smooth Extra Care 20 Cream with 20% urea is surprisingly effective against spider veins. (Full disclosure, Redex Industries, makers of Udderly Smooth Udder Creams, have advertised on our radio show for years). Here are some stories from visitors to this website:
“Two days ago, I received my order from The People’s Pharmacy of Udderly Smooth Extra Care 20. Two applications later, there is a more than 50% reduction in the color of my spider veins. My left foot, especially, has a large cluster of these veins – very noticeable before, much less noticeable now – to my utmost amazement.
“I will be telling ALL MY FRIENDS about this! The way I applied the cream is just a thin application to my feet and legs, just like one would do with any other body lotion. No bandages covering the areas.” Mignon
“I am currently using the Udderly Smooth cream with Urea and having similar great results! I’ve been putting a good-sized blob on the spider-vein area and covering with a bandage at night, and the spots have significantly faded and diminished in just a few days!” Wendy
“I applied the cream at night before bed. The patches began to fade in 2 weeks and were almost totally gone in another 3 weeks. My doctor was surprised at the results and assumed it was due to the keritolytic action of the Urea on the superficial veins.” R.L.M
We do not know whether this effect will last. We do know that topical urea can improve the skin’s barrier function and boost its resistance to bacteria and other microbes (Journal of Investigative Dermatology, June, 2012).
Udderly Smooth Extra Care 20 Cream is also a great moisturizer. Judi shared this experience:
“Folks, eight applications of Udderly Smooth Extra Care 20% cream over two days’ time has done what eight WEEKS of cortisone cream couldn’t. I’m flabbergasted by the improvement. I was hoping for a little relief-this is close to miraculous!
“I’m buying stock in this stuff. Please don’t ever change it!” Judi
Anyone who would like to learn more about urea and Udderly Smooth may want to watch our video below. And if you would like to order Extra Care 20 cream with 20% urea you will find it in our store in a handy tube or economical tub.