Understanding Leg Ulcers

Vascular surgeon is marking veins for varicose surgery.Ulcers are a reminder that something is going on with your body. Leg ulcers, in particular, can be a sign of an issue you need to give attention to. Understanding what causes them is the key to treating them and restoring your health.

Symptoms of Leg Ulcers

A leg ulcer is hard to miss and can make everyday tasks difficult.

Leg ulcers come with several symptoms that set them apart from other ailments. Some signs of a leg ulcer include:

  • Dull pain
  • Itching
  • Swelling
  • Discolored Skin
  • And a foul-smelling discharge

If you’ve experienced these symptoms, getting help is crucial. It’s important to note that self-diagnosis can worsen things. Getting professional advice can help you to get the leg ulcer under control.

Are Leg Ulcers Dangerous?

Most leg ulcers come from a bacterial infection of the skin in your leg, usually after an injury. Generally, leg ulcers heal themselves after a week and are easy to handle. But, when a leg ulcer doesn’t seem to heal, it may mean trouble. Unhealed leg ulcers can signify poor circulation in your leg veins or venous disease. 

Venous disease can be troubling. Diseased veins struggle to move blood throughout your body, robbing you of oxygen.

Unhealthy veins in the legs cause a backflow of blood, creating high blood pressure in your leg veins. This increased blood pressure in your legs leads to ulcers in your ankles.

If left untreated, leg ulcers can cause complications like infection and inflammation. In extreme cases, leg ulcers can lead to limb amputation if not addressed.

Circulation and Leg Ulcers 

If your leg ulcers aren’t healing, poor circulation may be the underlying cause.

But, you have a few options that can help improve your circulation. 

First, you can help your circulation but quitting smoking. Chemicals in cigarette smoke can cause blood vessels to constrict, making circulation problematic. Shortly after quitting smoking, your circulation shows signs of improvement. Also, your blood pressure begins to regulate after you stop.

Also, you can start improving your circulation by getting regular exercise. Physical activity makes the muscles relax and contract, stimulating the valves in the veins to open and close. When the valves open and close, it allows for proper blood flow through the body and gets you the oxygen you need.

Other ways that you can start improving your circulation are:

  • Diet changes
  • Losing weight
  • Managing stress
  • Wearing compression garments

Seek Professional Advice

Even with significant lifestyle changes, you may need help to improve your condition. At Fort Worth Vein Center, we have tools to treat ulcers and improve vein health. Dr. Oswalt uses minimally-invasive procedures to improve your circulation. 

To learn more about your options, schedule a consultation with us. Call us today at 817-893-2661.

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