If you have been diagnosed with chronic venous insufficiency, then you may be at risk for venous ulcers in Houston. It’s important to be aware of the causes and symptoms of venous ulcers so you can seek immediate treatment if necessary.
Causes of Venous Ulcers
Typically caused by poor circulation in the legs, venous ulcers are often a result of chronic venous insufficiency. Each vein in your legs contains valves that are designed to keep the blood flowing in one direction. The oxygen-poor blood in your legs is supposed to be pumped back toward the heart, but in the case of venous insufficiency due to damaged valves, the blood flows backward and pools in the veins of the legs. Over time, as the blood continues to fall downward, fluids may leak from the pressured veins into nearby tissues. These fluids suffocate cells in the tissues by preventing oxygen and other nutrients from reaching them. As cells die, the surrounding tissues are damaged and can break down, potentially leading to an ulceration of the skin.
Symptoms of Venous Ulcers
Early signs that a venous ulcer may be developing include an area of skin that becomes dark red or purple and skin that feels thick, hardened, itchy, or dry. If these symptoms aren’t treated, an ulcer can result. The sore may be painful, and your legs may feel achy or swollen. It’s essential to see a doctor as soon as you suspect an ulcer may be forming, or if an ulcer does develop. The sooner your wound is treated, the faster your healing process is likely to be.
Treatments for Venous Ulcers
Improving the blood circulation is the first step in treating venous ulcers. Walking daily, wearing compression stockings, and keeping your legs elevated can all prevent blood from pooling in your veins and leaking into the nearby tissues. It is imperative to treat the underlying venous insufficiency to speed up venous ulcer healing. This can be accomplished by in-office procedures such as endovenous ablation.