What are leg ulcers?

Leg ulcers are long-lasting, open wounds / sores that take more than two weeks to heal. Although they can be caused by a number of health issues, 80% of them are due to chronic vein insufficiency (or venous disease). Leg ulcers can be painful and prone to infection, and without proper treatment, they are difficult to heal and may reoccur. In fact, the longer leg ulcers are left, the larger they become, making them more difficult to heal. We therefore recommend treatment as soon as possible.

Leg Ulcers consultant Mr Hosaam Nasr
Varicose consultant Mr Martin Claridge

What are leg ulcers?

Leg ulcers are long-lasting, open wounds / sores that take more than two weeks to heal. Although they can be caused by a number of health issues, 80% of them are due to chronic vein insufficiency (or venous disease). Leg ulcers can be painful and prone to infection, and without proper treatment, they are difficult to heal and may reoccur. In fact, the longer leg ulcers are left, the larger they become, making them more difficult to heal. We therefore recommend treatment as soon as possible.

What are the symptoms of leg ulcers?

As well as a break in the skin that is not healing, our patients report a wide range of symptoms including:

  • Oedema – localised swelling in the legs and feet.
  • Varicose eczema – warm, itchy, scaly / flaky skin.
  • Lipodermatosclerosis – discoloured skin (pink or brown) that is fragile, hard or tight in texture.
  • Haemosiderin deposits – dark skin changes that don’t go away.

Can leg ulcers cause other health problems?

Aside from being painful and a cosmetic issue, leg ulcers can lead to other, more serious heath conditions including:

Varicose veins

Varicose veins are caused when the valves in our veins weaken and allow blood to flow backwards and pool, creating high pressure and making them enlarge. Subsequently, they are often blue or purple in colour and can be lumpy, twisted or bulging in appearance. Varicose veins can cause heavy, restless legs, as well as painful, itchy and dry skin. Click here for more information about this condition and how we can help.

Deep vein thrombosis (DVT)

A blood clot within a deep vein in the leg that can cause pain and swelling. A DVT may lead to more serious complications, such as a pulmonary embolism. This is when a piece of the clot breaks off into the bloodstream and blocks one of the blood vessels in the lungs.

Deep vein thrombosis (DVT)

The good news is that with the right treatment, leg ulcers and their associated conditions can be remedied.

What leg ulcer treatments do you offer?

Your treatment journey will begin with an initial consultation where our award-winning vascular consultants will perform a detailed examination including a medical history and symptoms overview, and a non-invasive duplex ultrasound scan. This will allow them to fully determine the underlying cause of your condition, and create an all-inclusive, tailored plan that will effectively treat your veins, suit your lifestyle and achieve the results you are looking for.