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Leg Ulcers

Venous ulcers typically appear around your ankle or lower leg. You will notice a shallow, red, open wound with uneven borders. Your venous ulcer may not cause pain until it becomes infected. By comparison, arterial ulcers are usually painful, deep, round wounds with well-defined margins.

A diabetic foot ulcer may first appear as a cut, scrape, or callus that turns into an open, red wound. Foot ulcers most often develop on the pressure points of your foot, such as the heel, ball of the foot, and anywhere your shoes are too tight.

Venous ulcers

Venous ulcers, also called venous stasis ulcers, occur when you have a vascular problem called chronic venous insufficiency. This condition causes blood to back up in your leg veins, which increases the blood pressure in your lower leg.

High venous pressure leads to a non-healing venous ulcer. Without wound care, the ulcer enlarges and can easily develop an infection.

Diabetic ulcers

High blood sugar damages the blood vessels in your foot and lower leg. If you develop a small wound on your foot, it won’t heal because it doesn’t get enough blood. The wound subsequently turns into a non-healing diabetic ulcer.

Another problem with high blood sugar is that it also damages the nerves in your foot, a condition called peripheral neuropathy. Neuropathy often causes numbness, so you won’t feel any pain and won’t realize you have a wound. As a result, it can turn into an ulcer before you know you have a problem.

What symptoms indicate that I need wound care?

If you have venous insufficiency, you may develop symptoms in your lower leg such as:

Varicose veins

Leg swelling

Chronic leg and foot pain

Lower limb hair loss

Poor nail growth

Skin rash and/or reddish-brown skin

These symptoms appear before high venous pressure causes a venous ulcer.

What wound care services might I receive?

Dr. Patel creates an individualized wound care plan that includes treating any underlying health conditions and providing essential care that supports wound healing.

Your wound care may include one or more of the following:

Compression therapy

Wound cleaning

Wound debridement

Advanced dressings

Antibiotic therapy

Bio-engineered tissue substitutes

Negative pressure wound therapy

Off-loading to eliminate pressure

Total contact casting

Dr. Patel also teaches you how to take care of your wound at home.

At the first sign of an active ulcer, call Premier Vascular or book an appointment online.