It’s natural to be self-conscious about leg ulcers, especially in the warmer months when wearing shorts, dresses, and skirts is far more comfortable than wearing pants. These open sores are more than just unsightly, though, and those who have any should seek adequate medical care. The sooner you recognize a developing leg ulcer and visit a doctor, the better the prognosis will be for treating it. Below, the knowledgeable team at Advanced Varicose Vein Treatments of Manhattan explains the common causes and early symptoms of leg ulcers so you can avoid complications.
What Causes Leg Ulcers?
Leg ulcers develop when air or bacteria enters tissue through a break in the skin. Most of these sores are the result of venous disease, which causes blood to pool in the lower limbs. This backflow can produce considerable pressure in the veins, stretching the skin around them and making it more vulnerable to injury. Taut skin is thinner, creating the perfect environment for a wound to develop at the slightest puncture and, subsequently, an ulcer may form if left untreated.
Arterial disease is the other major cause of leg ulcers. When at least one of the arteries in the legs is blocked, the lower body has limited circulation, which makes it virtually impossible for any wounds that do develop to heal on their own. If you have an open sore that will not heal, it is not a question of if bacteria will get into it but when. And once it does, an ulcer will develop. Early symptoms of a leg ulcer include swollen ankles, enlarged veins, pain after standing for an extended period, brown discoloration around the wound, flaky or red patches, and itchiness or burning at the site.
Who Is at Risk of Leg Ulcers?
People who have varicose veins are at risk of developing a leg ulcer, as are those who have conditions that inhibit circulation, like diabetes and rheumatoid circulation. Other risk factors include obesity, previous leg injuries, and a history of blood clots. Vulnerable populations can prevent leg ulcers by monitoring any wounds and seeking medical care immediately if said wounds appear infected or do not heal as quickly as they should.
If you have varicose veins and want to treat them before developing a painful leg ulcer, turn to Advanced Varicose Vein Treatments of Manhattan. They have offices throughout New York and are proud to offer everything from liposuction to foam sclerotherapy. You can find the location nearest you or inquire about an appointment with Dr. Ronald Lev by visiting their website or by calling (888) 356-VEIN.