[[quoteright:330:[[Film/IronMan2 http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/IronManPaladiumPoisoning1_6237.jpg]]]]
[[caption-width-right:330:[[WhatCouldPossiblyGoWrong Who'd have thought]] [[EmergencyTransformation putting]] an experimental clean energy source in your chest might have [[PowerDegeneration harmful]] [[HeroicRROD side effects]]?]]

->''"He has veins on his forehead now, which is the official ''Franchise/StarTrek'' code for "This poor bastard is in for a horribly painful transformation and/or death." Seriously, if you are ever yourself in a ''Star Trek'' episode and you see this happening to yourself'', [[BetterToDieThanBeKilled turn your phaser on yourself]]. ''There is no hope if you have a veiny head unless you are an alien or a main cast member. Just put yourself out of your own misery."''
-->-- '''Website/SFDebris''' recaps the ''Series/StarTrekVoyager'' episode "[[Recap/StarTrekVoyagerS2E15Threshold Threshold]]"

''[-[[WaxingLyrical Sometimes I feel I've got to (dum dum) run away I've got to (dum dum) get away from the pain that you drive into the heart of me]]-]... ''

In general, the tendency of people suffering some sort of abnormal condition to develop highly visible, off-color veins all over their body or near the distressed areas.

Might be due to catching a bite from someone/thing infected with TheVirus, or as a manifestation of a villain's RedRightHand after willingly succumbing to TheDarkSide or TheCorruption. It's also possible if the character is suffering a SuperPowerMeltdown, PowerDegeneration, or as a side effect to taking too much PsychoSerum. A [[OurVampiresAreDifferent vampire]], [[OurWerewolvesAreDifferent werewolf]] or other supernatural critter hit with DepletedPhlebotinumShells inducing a burning reaction (or even just partial sun exposure/blood starvation) may develop Tainted Veins because their [[GlamourFailure glamour is failing]]. Special mention goes to [[ZombieApocalypse zombie bites]] for always creating nasty necrotic veins wherever they bit.

Expect characters with a HealingFactor (or with friends possessing HealingHands and or a MagicAntidote) to quickly and neatly reverse the appearance of these veins.

See also VolcanicVeins for when they '''[[color:orange:glow]]'''. Compare VeinOVision, which is where a character has a power that makes them see the world this way.

This is a JustifiedTrope (TropesAreNotBad): There are toxins that cause venous thrombosis (clotting of blood in veins) which can make surface veins visible and dark -- especially if the clotting is in deep tissue in an affected limb.



[[folder:Anime & Manga]]
* This is one of the warning signs of Tetsuo's imminent mutation near the end of ''Manga/{{Akira}}''.
* ''Manga/AttackOnTitan'': A side effect of [[spoiler:Titan shifting]].
* Inverted in ''Manga/{{Bleach}}'', where highly visible veins are caused by the use of "[[GratuitousGerman Blut Vene]]", a [[spoiler:Quincy]] [[SuperToughness defensive technique]].
* Babidi's human henchmen in ''Manga/DragonballZ'' have unusually bulging veins without discoloration.
* ''Manga/FullmetalAlchemist''
** The second Greed gets these whenever he and [[spoiler:Ling]] have a disagreement.
** [[spoiler: Ed]] also gets these temporarily when [[spoiler: Pride tries to [[GrandTheftMe take him over]].]]
* Owing to his tendency to forcibly insert himself right into the bloodstream and organs of his opponents to extract 'information', Armisael in ''Anime/NeonGenesisEvangelion'' causes this to both the Eva he's attacking and the pilot of the Eva. Let's just say that Rei's encounter with Armisael looked incredibly painful.
* Kurumi from ''Manga/SchoolLive'' gains these on her right arm, the right side of her neck, and a bit of the right side of her face, after her close brush with [[spoiler:zombification]]. It is unsure if this will be permanent however, as she's treated quickly but there are signs the treatment wasn't permanent.
* These have a tendency to show up whenever someone's using their powers in ''Manga/SnowWhiteAndSevenDwarfs''. With it being a series about being BlessedWithSuck, they're generally not a good sign.
* In ''Manga/TokyoGhoul'', Ghouls tend to get raised, red veins around their eyes when angry or otherwise using their powers.
* Viruses in ''Manga/VenusVersusVirus'' have these, usually on their faces.
* [[http://static.tvtropes.org/pmwiki/pub/images/Yami_Marik_8267.jpg Dark Marik]] of ''Anime/YuGiOh''.

[[folder:Comic Books]]
* ''[[ComicBooks/RobinSeries Robin]]'': Strader Pharmaceuticals illegally developed [[PsychoSerum super-drug]] causes the users to have bulging discolored veins as their bodies start breaking down as they die from the side-effects.

[[folder:Films -- Live-Action]]
* A sign that you are falling under the BigBad's sway in ''[[Film/FiveGirls 5ive Girls]]''.
* The vampires in ''Film/ThirtyDaysOfNight''.
* Poison Ivy's toxic kisses cause these to appear on her victims in ''Film/BatmanAndRobin''.
%%* ''Film/{{Demoni}}.''
* ''Literature/{{Dreamcatcher}}'' had this, but it was an alien plant growing into the infectee's face.
* The vampires in ''Film/InterviewWithTheVampire'' had visible veins on their faces, too, but that was as much due to their creepily transparent porcelain white skin as it was to their veins being full of freshly drunk blood.
* Tony Stark's Palladium poisoning in ''Film/IronMan2'' displayed these symptoms.
* The vampires in ''Film/JohnCarpentersVampires'' [[http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-gdWFGQ2EYg/UAL6bXBrKCI/AAAAAAAABNs/wPJHiEuyYUE/s1600/11.+Łowcy+wampirów+.jpg have them.]]
* Zombies in ''Film/RockabillyZombieWeekend'', as part of the gradual breakdown of their body, have their veins gradually begin bulging out until they're visible as thick purple lines etched across their bodies.
* ''Film/Siren2010'': When Silka resumes what is (presumably) her true form. her skin is waxy and translucent--like a drowned person--with black veins running beneath.
* Alien-influenced humans in ''Film/{{Skyline}}''.
* In ''Film/StarTrekFirstContact'', as the Borg invade the Enterprise, they convert crew members by injecting (presumably) some kind of nanobot version of TheVirus which can be seen spreading through dark veins from the point of injection.
* ''Film/XMenFilmSeries'':
** This happens to whoever Rogue touches in the movies.
** Mutated Senator Kelly also has them before he dies.
** Instead of the expected fire effects, movieverse Jean Grey/Phoenix gets Tainted Veins and BlackEyesOfEvil when in Dark Phoenix mode in X3.
* In ''Film/KingsmanTheGoldenCircle'' this was the first sign that a drug user was infected with the virus Poppy tainted the drugs with; blue veins started appearing all over the user's body.
* ''Film/{{XX}}'': In "Don't Fall", the first visible sign of Gretchen's transformation is the veins in the palm of the hand that touched the cave wall turning black.

* ''Literature/TheDresdenFiles'':
** In ''Literature/ProvenGuilty'', when Harry looks upon a heroin addict with the Sight and sees her addiction manifesting as green-black veins under her skin ending at dozens of tiny, hungry mouths opening and closing where her needle marks were in the real world.
** In ''Literature/{{Changes}}'', we are treated to a minor case of this courtesy of Ebenezar, as a result of [[spoiler:using [[ArtifactOfDoom the Blackstaff]].]]
* In the ''Literature/SkulduggeryPleasant'' series, [[spoiler: people possessed by Remnants (evil shadows/sprits) get black veins and lips, but only if the Remnant wants to show itself. Otherwise they just look like normal people.]]
* ''Franchise/StarWarsLegends'':
** When Tash Arranda is infected with TheVirus in ''Literature/GalaxyOfFear: The Planet Plague'', she starts off with a rash that becomes a swelling bump with raised brownish veins. [[spoiler: Then it starts [[BodyHorror leaking]] brownish-green BlobMonster goo.]]
** Spore assimilates people by sending out dark vinelike things that sink into the skin and are quickly only visible as a "dark tracing of lines", like veins.

[[folder:Live-Action TV]]
* Dark Willow on ''Series/{{Buffy|The Vampire Slayer}}''.
* ''Series/DoctorWho'':
** The Second Doctor was up against a "plague" that gave a [[Recap/DoctorWhoS4E6TheMoonbase moonbase crew]] tainted veins. [[Recap/DoctorWhoS12E5RevengeOfTheCybermen Eight years later]], the same tainted veins gave the Fourth Doctor a clue who he was up against.
** In [[Recap/DoctorWhoS31E8TheHungryEarth "The Hungry Earth"]]/[[Recap/DoctorWhoS31E9ColdBlood "Cold Blood"]], [[spoiler:Alaya poisons Tony]]. His veins turn green.
* In ''Series/{{Helix}},'' victims of TheVirus develop black veins, particularly visible in the denuded infected lab rats the CDC researchers use for testing.
* ''Series/KamenRiderExAid'': This shows that [[spoiler:the Gemdeus virus continues to multiply]] inside Graphite Bugster, who is obviously in pain.
* People affected by Alisha's power in ''Series/{{Misfits}}'' have their veins turn blue until contact is broken.
* This is the main symptom of the plague spread by Pestilence in the ''Series/SleepyHollow'' episode "John Doe".
* In ''Series/{{Smallville}}'', Clark gets 'em when [[KryptoniteFactor Kryptonite]] is around... and KryptoniteIsEverywhere.
* An episode of ''Series/StarTrekTheNextGeneration'' had Geordi get infected by a disease that covered him with [[VolcanicVeins invisible blue glowing]] veins. ItMakesSenseInContext.
** Borg assimilation does this, with added blueish-grey skin.
** WebSite/SFDebris notes that if your veins start going weird (and especially on your forehead), you're screwed unless you're a main character.
* Happens a few times in ''Series/{{Supernatural}}'', more notably when [[spoiler:Castiel is possessed by the leviathans.]]
* In ''Series/TheVampireDiaries'', this is a standard part of a vampire's GameFace. The veins around their eyes appear to writhe with a black taint.
* In ''Series/{{Wolfblood}}'' when a character is close to transforming into a wolf they get these along with SupernaturalGoldEyes.
* Skinner in ''Series/TheXFiles'' episode "SR 819" was poisoned by {{Nanomachines}}. He got better. However, it was never fully resolved and he could be affected by it later at any time.

[[folder:Pro Wrestling]]
* Wrestling/LunaVachon's gimmick, as a result of being crazy or occult, depending on what time period and which promotion you saw her in. Bull Nakano had a similar look, so naturally the two were put together as a team when they ended up in the same locker rooms.

[[folder:Tabletop Games]]
* The Seventh Soul in ''TabletopGame/{{GURPS}} Villains'' has black veins all over its body. These are its only persistent identifying feature, since it reincarnates.

[[folder:Video Games]]
* After [[spoiler:Beatrice]] dies in ''VideoGame/DantesInferno,'' her spirit form has dark veins... [[FanDisservice all over her naked pale chest]].
* In ''VideoGame/DeusEx'' and other games set in the same universe, nanotech augmentation gives you this. Although you're [[SuperSoldier far from sick...]] [[spoiler: Actually, you ''are'' sick and your augs and Gray Death are one and the same, you are just immune to the bad symptoms]].
* In ''VideoGame/DragonAgeII,'' this is one symptom of the Darkspawn corruption that finally kills [[spoiler: Wesley]].
** [[spoiler:And Bethany/Carver, if she dies in the Deep Roads.]] Or anyone who dies via the Taint, of course.
* In ''VideoGame/{{Killzone}},'' Helghast have these, as a result of the first settlers trying to adjust to Helghan's sickly atmosphere and hundreds of years worth of forced evolution.
* In ''VideoGame/KnightsOfTheOldRepublic'', ash-pale skin with blue veins signifies your character going completely darkside.
* Happens to Leon in ''VideoGame/ResidentEvil4'', during a [[AllJustADream dream sequence]] after he's infected with the ''Las Plagas'' parasite. Fortunately for him, he's able to find a cure before anything like that starts to happen for real.
** Happens to [[spoiler: Wesker]] in ''VideoGame/ResidentEvil5'' after the heroes overdose him on his own serum. They become even more prominent when [[spoiler: he infects himself with Uroboros]], but are quiclky concealed by his skin ''partially decomposing''.
** In ''VideoGame/ResidentEvil6'', [[spoiler: Derek Simmons, after being shot with a viral dart,]] develops a cluster of these spreading from the wound onto his face and shoulder. They disappear when he [[OneWingedAngel transforms]] shortly after.
* In ''VideoGame/MetroidPrime3Corruption'', each time Samus absorbs a [[ToxicPhlebotinum Phazon Core]], her veins become more noticeable in reflections of her face; bigger, longer, bluer.
* ''VideoGame/{{Spore}}'' has this as a variant of coloration for your creature.
* Taken UpToEleven in ''VideoGame/{{Prototype}}'' and ''VideoGame/{{Prototype 2}}''. Alex Mercer's and James Heller's bodies are covered in thick, pulsating red and black veins when they unleash their Blacklight-virus powers.
* In ''VideoGame/FarCry'', seeing the veins in your arms turn dark is how you find out that you've been exposed to the mutagen.
* ''VideoGame/{{Skullgirls}}''' Painwheel has dark veins all over her body, thanks to the experiments that transformed her into her current state.
* It happens to Batman in ''VideoGame/BatmanArkhamCity'' after the Joker infects him with the Titan disease, the veins becoming more prominent and ''black'' across his face.
* If a character consistently favors magic in certain ''VideoGame/{{Fable}}'' games, the 'will lines' they develop resemble this.
* ''VideoGame/DarkestDungeon'': The Abomination, as seen in his skill slots. He has a stabilized flow of blight in his veins, and can deepen the veins to increase his resistances... or just cough up venom and spit it at his foes. Note that blight represents a combination of poison, venom, and acid all in one goopy package.
* An archaeologist affected by poison in ''Hidden Expedition 15: The Curse of Mithridates'' has creeping purple veins.

[[folder: Web Animation]]
* BigBad Salem from ''WebAnimation/{{RWBY}}'' sports prominent black veins all over her body, including on her exposed hands and face. This is apparently normal for... whatever she is.

[[folder:Web Comics]]
* ''Webcomic/{{Ayuri}}'': Fenna, or more accurately, [[PuppeteerParasite her host]].
* In ''Webcomic/WakeTheSleepers'', [[http://wakethesleepers.com/comics/53 Locke's hand]].

[[folder:Web Original]]
* ''Roleplay/GlobalGuardiansPBEMUniverse'':
** When the supervillain Virus injects his victims with the mind-control serum, their veins turn dark green around the injection site.
** Cyborg supervillain La Constructeuse has this sort of thing going on with her own body, but the vein-tracery looks like circuitry.

[[folder:Western Animation]]
* ''WesternAnimation/StarVsTheForcesOfEvil'':
** Eclipsa and [[spoiler: Moon]] have dark purple veins on their hands as a result of using dark magic.
* ''WesternAnimation/StarWarsTheCloneWars'':
** [[Recap/StarWarsTheCloneWarsS1E18MysteryOfAThousandMoons "Mystery of a Thousand Moons"]]: Those infected with the Blue Shadow Virus develop visible dark blue veins. The clone troopers, in particular, look ''awful''.
** [[Recap/StarWarsTheCloneWarsS3E16AltarOfMortis "Altar of Mortis"]]: When [[AnthropomorphicPersonification the Son]] [[spoiler:forcibly turns Ahsoka to the Dark Side by biting her, her veins turn dark and her eyes turn [[SupernaturalGoldEyes gold]].]]