Venous Ulcer Treatment: Get Rid Of Painful And Embarrassing Ulcer Treatment
A venous ulcer is a type of sore that is commonly present on your leg. This long-lasting ulcer takes a longer time (more than 2 weeks) to heal due to inferior blood circulation in the limb. A venous leg ulcer could be a discolored or hardened skin that produces a foul-smelling discharge.
These ulcers may cause some serious problems if remaining untreated. Preventive steps are there that you need to follow to prevent them from happening.
What Causes Venous Ulcers?
Venous ulcers are the most common type of leg ulcers, nearly 90% of the cases. This type of ulcer occurs when the skin of your leg breaks, usually around the ankle.
The veins in the leg are responsible for sending blood back to the heart and may not perform properly. This is because the valves that stop the flow of blood back into the veins can’t work effectively as they should. There is an enhanced pressure at the end of the limb due to the back blow of the blood. If this happens, then your skin gets weakened. It’s very difficult for a cut or wound to heal. These types of ulcers are commonly present over bony areas like your ankle.
Who Gets Venous Ulcers?
Nearly 1% of Americans have venous skin ulcers. Venous leg ulcers are affected by nearly 1 in 500 people in the UK. These ulcers are more prominent in older people, particularly women.
You are more susceptible to getting this type of ulcer if you
- Are suffering from previous leg injuries
- Have varicose veins
- Are obese
- Have other blood circulation problems such as blood clots or phlebitis (a painful and inflammation of veins)
These types of ulcers cause itching and burning sensations. Around the ulcers, your leg could be swollen. Other signs are:
An ulcer may get infected too. If that occurs, you might observe,
If you have an infected wound that is not healing properly, you should consult a doctor. By examination of the sore and the skin around it, your doctor will find out whether you have a venous skin ulcer or not. Your doctor may ask about your medical history and other underlying conditions, such as diabetes or hardening of the arteries.
Sometimes, he/she may recommend some other tests, such as an X-ray or a CT scan to get a detailed view of your veins and the surrounding area of the ulcer.
If not treated, an ulcer may lead to other serious problems, including severe skin and bone infections. In rare cases, it may turn into skin cancer.
Venous Ulcer Treatment
Most venous ulcers usually heal within 3-4 months if they are treated by experienced professionals who have adequate knowledge regarding compression therapy for leg ulcers. The compression bandage or stocking is the most common treatment for venous ulcers. The pressure is necessary to enhance the blood circulation in your leg. Once the blood circulation is improved it will speed up the healing process. Some ulcers may take a longer time to heal; only a certain percentage of them never heal.
You will be asked to raise your leg for set lengths of time as well. This improves blood circulation. Doctors will suggest the compression treatment for a half-hour 3 or 4 times a day.
- A deft healthcare expert will first clean and dress your wound
- Then, after using compressions, such as bandages or stockings, he will improve the flow of blood in the leg.
If bacteria are responsible for your leg ulcers, then the doctor will give antibiotics to kill the infection. You may need to put over a moist dressing on your ulcer so that it gets healed quickly.
In some rare cases, your doctor will refer you to surgery to improve the circulation in your legs. This will help your ulcers heal quickly and also, prevent similar problems in future.
- Stay away from smoking
- Lose weight
- Control your chronic healthcare conditions such as high blood pressure or diabetes
- Take aspirin to prevent blood clots
- Discard the amount of salt in your diet
- Exercise regularly for at least 30 minutes
- Wear compression stockings
- Keep your legs elevated when you can
Some Other Types of Leg Ulcers
Let’s take a look at some other types of leg ulcers
- Arterial Leg Ulcers: these ulcers are caused by reduced blood circulation in the arteries
- Diabetic Leg Ulcers: These ulcers are caused by high blood sugar related to diabetes. Diabetic ulcers are common on the feet.
- Vasculitic Leg Ulcers: These ulcers are associated with chronic inflammatory disorders such as lupus and rheumatoid arthritis
- Traumatic Leg Ulcers: These ulcers are caused by injury to the leg
- Malignant Leg Ulcers: These ulcers are caused by a tumor on the skin of the leg
The Bottom Line
Venous leg ulcer commonly occurs on the leg, above the ankle. By opting for proper treatment you can get rid of these ulcers. If you experience any changes in skin color or cracks, without any delay consult the doctor immediately.