How to Prevent Venous Ulcers on the Legs

We are all familiar with those unsightly varicose and spider veins that can show up on our legs to ruin our summer fun. What you might not know is that those damaged veins and venous insufficiency can lead to even uglier consequences—namely, ulcers. Fortunately, there are ways to reduce your risk of developing venous ulcers. 

Man riding a bike.

What Are Venous Ulcers?

Venous ulcers are chronic open skin sores that frequently form around the ankles due to lack of proper circulation and blood flow. They are caused by chronic venous insufficiency. When your leg veins cannot pump blood back to your heart, they swell, and when the swelling becomes severe, it can lead to the formation of venous ulcers.

Ulcers begin with redness, itching, and hardening. The skin cracks open which starts the development of ulcers. They do not just go away and serious infections can follow.

Common Symptoms of Venous Ulcers

Itchy and scaly skin is the first sign. You will notice hardness around the ulcer, it may turn purple, red, or brown in color, and there will be an unpleasant and foul-smelling discharge.

Since ulcers do not heal on their own, it is important to see Vein Center at Brinton Lake for how to care for a venous ulcer. You may need an antibiotic if it has become infected.

Preventing Venous Ulcers on the Legs

Once you have had a leg ulcer, you are more at risk for developing others. Consequently, it is important to do all you can to prevent them.

  • Staying active, exercising regularly, and moving around every day is essential. At the same time, talk with your doctor since there are certain exercises you should avoid. Try to avoid standing for long periods of time.
  • Keeping your weight under control can help prevent venous ulcers.
  • Wearing compression socks will help keep any vein issues in check. They can help improve blood flow, and Vein Center at Brinton Lake can prescribe medical compression socks.
  • Eating a healthy diet will help to prevent venous ulcers on the legs. Fruits, vegetables, lean protein, grains, and healthy fats are all part of a healthy diet. Avoid salt, sugar, and unhealthy fats. In addition, drink plenty of fluids.
  • Stop smoking! Talk with your doctor if you need help. This one is important.
  • Elevating your legs will help improve blood circulation. Lay flat on your back and use pillows under your legs.

Contact Vein Center at Brinton Lake at (610) 579-3516 if you have venous ulcers and would like to learn more about treatments in Glen Mills, PA.