After The Ulcer Has Healed
Once you have had a venous leg ulcer, another ulcer could develop within months or years.
The most effective method of preventing this is to wear compression stockings at all times when you’re out of bed.
Your nurse will help you find a stocking that fits correctly and you can manage yourself.
Various accessories are available to help you put them on and take them off.
Page last reviewed: 11 January 2019 Next review due: 11 January 2022
Diagnosis Of Skin Ulcers In Dogs
If you notice a lesion on your dogs skin, bring your dog in to a veterinarian for a thorough examination. Be prepared to provide a history, including your dogs recent activity, places you may have visited, and any additional signs or behaviors that are out of the ordinary.
As part of this examination, the veterinarian may conduct blood tests, take cultures of any fluids to identify the infection, and perform a biopsy of the affected skin. This helps determine the cause of the ulcer and discover any other conditions. Depending on the results, the veterinarian may recommend further tests, such as x-rays, ultrasounds, or urinalysis, which will reveal more information regarding the root cause of your dogs skin ulcers and show the extent of the condition. This allows the veterinarian to determine the best course of action and prescribe treatment accordingly.
Monitor your dog carefully throughout this process. Even if your dog does not initially exhibit unusual signs beyond the ulcer, further symptoms may still develop over time. Alert the veterinarian immediately if you notice any changes.
Ingestible Causes Of Ulcers In Dogs
- Plants and Human Foods that are Toxic including mushrooms, castor beans, sago palm, spicy foods, mistletoe, Jerusalem Cherry, daffodil, onions, chives, garlic, and oysters.
- Pesticide Toxicity
- Rodenticide Toxicity Mouse and rat poison
- Insecticide Toxicity Sprays, bait stations, and spot on flea/tick treatments
- Chemical Poisons Ethylene glycol & Phenols
- Heavy Metal Poisons Lead, Zinc, Iron, and Arsenic
- Prescription and Nonprescription Drugs for Humans Anti-inflammatory medications, pain medications, corticosteroids
- Prescription Drugs for Dogs Pain relievers, particularly COX-2 inhibitors (Rimadyl, Deramaxx, Flunixin Meglumine, and Previcox
- Ingestion of sharp objects
Note: There are many common household items and plants that are poisonous to dogs that you should be cautious of in and around your home. If those are too much reading, heres a fairly comprehensive list covering the most common of both.
Recommended Reading: Nursing Care Plan For Pressure Ulcer Prevention
How Can You Prevent Ulcers
Theres a lot you can do to reduce your risk for ulcers:
- Check yourself: If you cant feel parts of your body — such as your feet — because of nerve damage, take a look at them every day. Look for blisters, cuts, cracks, sores, redness, white spots, thick , discoloration, or other changes. If you feel warmer or colder than usual, that can be a sign that you have an open wound. But you may not feel anything. If you cant check your legs or feet yourself, ask a family member to help.
- Protect your feet: Dont walk barefoot, especially if you have diabetes or cant feel your feet. A foot injury can increase your risk for ulcers. Shoes that cover the whole foot, instead of sandals or flip-flops, are best.
- Quit smoking: Cigarettes damage blood vessels, decrease blood flow, and slow healing. Those things increase your risk for ulcers and amputation. If you smoke, talk to your doctor about resources that can help you kick the habit.
Treatment For Leg Ulcers
- cleaning the wound using wet and dry dressings and ointments, or surgery to remove the dead tissue
- specialised dressings a whole range of products are available to help the various stages of wound healing. Dressings are changed less often these days, because frequent dressing changes remove healthy cells as well
- occlusive dressings ulcers heal better when they are covered. These dressings should be changed weekly
- compression treatment boosts internal pressure, using either elasticised bandages or stockings. This is particularly effective if multiple layers are used
- medication includes pain-relieving medication and oral antibiotics if infection is present
- supplements there is evidence that leg ulcers may heal faster with mineral and vitamin supplements, but only if the person suffers from a deficiency. Zinc, iron and vitamin C may be used
- skin graft is a surgical procedure, where healthy skin is grafted onto the prepared wound site
- skin cancer and infection if ulcers fail to heal or if they increase in size, both these conditions will need to be ruled out
- hyperbaric oxygen this is now an accepted treatment for ulcers that resist other methods of healing, such as diabetic ulcers.
Also Check: What Can You Do For A Bleeding Ulcer
What Are The Symptoms Of Ankle Ulcers
The symptoms of ankle ulcers include:
- Slight sense of burning and itching
- May or may not be painful
- Red with yellow skin over the ulcers
- If the ulcer is infected, there will be a discharge of yellow or green fluid.
- The skin may be warm or hot to touch.
- The surrounding area of the skull will be swollen and discolored.
- Leg pain This will depend on how swollen the ankle is.
- The skin may feel very tight and therefore give a shiny appearance to the skin.
Who Gets Foot And Toe Ulcers
Foot and toe ulcers can happen to many people but might be more common in Black, Native American and Hispanic people. If you have an eye, kidney or heart disease related to diabetes, youre also at a higher risk. About 15% of people with diabetes will get an ulcer, typically on the bottom of their foot. Some of those people will be hospitalized because of complications.
Youre also at a higher risk of getting foot and toe ulcers if you have any of the following conditions:
- Blood circulation issues.
If your ulcer is black, that means cells in the tissues have died. This is called necrosis .
Recommended Reading: How To Treat Diabetic Ulcers On Toes
Words From Our Patients
“The staff at Tower Wound Care Center was so professional and happy. Always on time. The medical industry should try and copy how they operate their business.”
“Every time I’ve seen Dr. Vincenti, she’s been incredibly kind and thorough. She seems to genuinely care and take an interest in my healing.”
“His attention to detail and complete sterility when working with my wounds were astounding.”
“Nice cheerful music and everyone was cheery. Great Doctor!
“I have never been questioned about my senior status until last Friday night. The woman said she didnt believe me that I was 60-65. Thank you for my youthful look!”
What To Expect After Treatment With Cvm
At CVM, we’re ready to help diagnose and treat your leg ulcers at our select wound care locations:
Our expert team will carefully consider all potential chronic pelvic pain causes, with a special emphasis of diagnosing any potential vascular disorders.
We provide complete chronic pelvic treatment for pain. Aside from implementing innovative techniques to treat your pain, including treatments for vascular issues, we’re committed to listening to your concerns and treating your pain seriously. Many of our patients go on to have significant improvement or resolution of their symptoms.
Recommended Reading: What Causes Ulcers In Your Mouth
How Are Foot And Toe Ulcers Treated
The treatment of all ulcers begins with careful skin and foot care. Inspecting your skin is very important, especially for people with diabetes. Detecting and treating foot and toe sores early can help you prevent infection and keep the sore from getting worse.
The goal of treating a foot or toe ulcer is to heal your wound and relieve any pain. Your treatment plan will be individualized based on what medical condition is causing your ulcers. If you cant correct the cause of your ulcer, its likely to come back after treatment.
There are both surgical and nonsurgical treatments for foot and toe ulcers. For early-stage foot and toe ulcers, nonsurgical treatments might work. More advanced ulcers especially ones that are infected might require surgery.
Nonsurgical treatments include:
- Topical wound care.
- Reconstructive surgery using skin grafts.
How Are They Treated
Initially, improving blood circulation can help. Patients can try:
- Lifting the legs above the heart level frequently.
- Wearing compression stockings or bandages to prevent blood from pooling in the legs.
- Walking daily to improve blood circulation.
The doctor often performs a debridement to excise dead tissue from the wound. After the ulcer has healed, compression stockings should still be worn, taken off for bathing and sleeping. The doctor may advise additional treatments if needed such as:
- Medication to hasten to heal or for an infection such as antibiotics.
- Skin grafting, for deep or hard-to-heal ulcers.
- Vein surgery, which can keep ulcers from returning.
Read Also: What Causes Mouth Ulcers On Gums
Finding The Best Treatment For A Diabetic Foot Ulcer
Youre probably wondering if a person who has no history of diabetes is likely to have a foot ulcer and the answer is yes, its possible. Its important to contact a health professional no matter your current health condition as you do not want symptoms to get worse.
The Wound Institute of America is ready to accept new patients who want to have professional wound care from the number one wound care center in California. To make an appointment with Wound Institute of America or to learn more about your foot ulcer, call 919-4179. You can also learn more about foot ulcers and other wound care treatments on our website here.
Advanced Wound Care Starts At Stridewoundcare
The causes of open wounds can be complex and challenging. At StrideWoundCare we work with you and your primary care doctor, vascular specialist, podiatrist, or other healthcare provider. A comprehensive approach in developing a complete care plan to heal your wound achieves the best results to improve your quality of life. Our dedicated nursing staff provides regular ongoing care based on your personalized care plan. In addition to providing excellent wound care and management, our nurses will advise you about daily activities that can affect your wound.
At StrideWoundCare, our highly skilled and experienced team uses the most advanced medical techniques to help heal your wounds. For a consultation with one of our experts, please contact us at 214-285-9200 or complete the appointment form.
StrideWoundCare serves the D/FW area including Richardson, Garland, Highland Park, University Park, Park Cities, Plano, Frisco, Allen, McKinney, Irving, Grand Prairie, Denton, Flower Mound, Sherman, Dennison, HEB, Hutchins, Duncanville, DeSoto, Cedar Hill, Lancaster, Cockrell Hill, Dallas, Mesquite, Lewisville, Craig Ranch, Arlington, Fort Worth, Addison, Carrollton, and all North Texas.
This information is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Prior to starting any new treatment or questions regarding a medical condition, always seek the advice of your doctor or other qualified health provider.
How Venous Leg Ulcers Are Treated
Most venous leg ulcers heal within 3 to 4 months if they’re treated by a healthcare professional trained in compression therapy for leg ulcers. However, some ulcers may take longer to heal, and a very small number never heal.
Treatment usually involves:
- cleaning and dressing the wound
- using compression, such as bandages or stockings, to improve the flow of blood in the legs
Antibiotics may also be used if the ulcer becomes infected, but they don’t help ulcers to heal.
However, unless the underlying cause of the ulcer is addressed, there’s a high risk of a venous leg ulcer recurring after treatment. Underlying causes could include immobility, obesity, previous DVT, or varicose veins.
Can Venous Leg Ulcers Be Prevented
There are several ways to help prevent a venous leg ulcer in people at risk, such as:
- wearing compression stockings
- losing weight if you’re overweight
- exercising regularly
- elevating your leg when possible
This is particularly important if you’ve previously had a leg ulcer once a leg has suffered a venous ulcer, you’re at risk of further ulcers developing within months or years.
Read more about preventing venous leg ulcers.
You May Like: Diabetic Foot Ulcer Treatment Guidelines
How Are Ankle Ulcers Treated
The main aim in the treatment of venous stasis ulcers is to heal the wound, treat any infections and relieve the pain. In addition, compression therapy may also be used to bring down the swelling. This helps to heal the wound much faster and prevent the development of repeated ulcers. There are several methods of compression including compression stockings, wraps or even elastic bandages. Your doctor will decide what type of compression method suits you best.
If compression therapy fails, then your doctor may prescribe you medications like Aspirin or Pentoxifylline. These drugs are very effective in the treatment of ulcers. In addition, diuretics may also be prescribed to reduce the swelling in your legs.
If you have an infection, then your doctor may prescribe you antibiotics as well to treat the infection. Take all of the medications as prescribed. Keep the area of the ulcer clean and frequently change the dressing on your leg as advised. This will reassure proper healing. It is also important that your drink a lot of water, eat healthy, get adequate rest and exercise regularly to hasten the healing process.
Only after the wounds or abrasions heal, then compression stockings needs to be put on. This will act like a pump, compress the veins in the legs and blood will move smoothly back from the heart to the legs. This will also reduce water retention, pain and swelling in the feet to a good extent.
Risks & Complications Of Skin Ulcers
If not treated at the right time, ulcers can lead to â
1. Cellulitis: This is a serious infection caused by bacteria. It is characterized by swelling and painful skin. It commonly occurs in the lower parts of legs.
2. Septicemia: This is a severe condition of blood poisoning from infection by bacteria. It can severely affect your organs.
3. Osteomyelitis: This infection of bones and joints is caused by bacteria or fungi. The infected part of the bone may swell up, and die due to lack of blood supply.
4. Gangrene: Bacterial infections or absence of required levels of blood within the body can result in death of your body tissues. It is known as gangrene.
Recommended Reading: Signs And Symptoms Of Peptic Ulcer
Infectious Diseases That Cause Ulcers In Dogs
This can include bacterial, fungal, and viral infections that affect the stomach such as gastrointestinal inflammation or increased stomach acid.
- Bacterias that cause can cause ulcers in dogs include: campylobacter, helicobacter, salmonella, clostridium piliforme
- Viral infections that can cause ulcers in dogs include: canine parvovirus, canine coronavirus, canine rotavirus, canine astroviruses
- Fungal infections that can cause ulcers in dogs include:histoplasma capsulatum, aspergillus species, candida albicans, phycomycetes
What Are The Symptoms
Skin ulcers look like round, open sores. They range in severity and are usually minor injuries on the skin.
In severe cases, ulcers can become deep wounds that extend through muscle tissue, leaving bones and joints exposed.
The symptoms of skin ulcers include:
- discoloration of the skin
People can develop the following types of skin ulcer:
Recommended Reading: How To Calm An Ulcer Attack
What Are Arterial Ulcers
A condition called peripheral arterial disease can reduce blood flow to your extremities. When this happens, your foot tissue may start to die. The ulcers that form from reduced blood flow are called arterial ulcers.
The word arterial means relating to arteries. Arteries are blood vessels that transport blood from your heart to the rest of your body, including your feet and toes. Anyone can get an arterial ulcer, but people who smoke or have diabetes, high blood pressure or high cholesterol are at higher risk.
Unlike neurotrophic ulcers, arterial ulcers can form on many parts of your body, including:
- On your heels.
- On the tips of your toes.
- Between your toes .
- The bony parts of your feet and toes that rub against bed sheets, socks or shoes.
- The nail bed .
Arterial ulcers are:
- An unusual walk that puts too much pressure on one part of your foot or toe.
- Friction when your foot or toe rubs against the toe box of your shoe.
When Should I See My Healthcare Provider About Foot And Toe Ulcers
If you have diabetes, its important to see a podiatrist regularly. Whether you have diabetes or not, you should see a healthcare provider immediately if you find an ulcer on your foot or toe. Left untreated, it could get infected, leading to complications like amputations.
A note from Cleveland Clinic
It can be distressing to discover an open sore on your foot or toe. You might not know what caused it, it might not be healing and, if you have neuropathy from diabetes, you might not even feel it. Keep in mind that your healthcare provider can successfully treat your ulcer, especially if its found early. If left untreated, an ulcer can lead to serious complications.
If you have neuropathy caused by diabetes, remember that its important to check your feet and toes on a regular basis. Check your toes and feet every time you shower or when you go to put on your shoes. Contact your healthcare provider right away if you find an ulcer.
Read Also: Over The Counter Mouth Ulcer Treatment
What Other Types Of Skin Ulcers Are There
Aside from venous skin ulcers, the others that can occur include:
- Arterial skin ulcers occur when artery disease is present. These ulcers can be very painful. They are typically on the feet and toes.
- Neuropathic skin ulcers are also referred to as diabetic neuropathic ulcers. They develop in those who have little or no feeling in the feet because of diabetic nerve damage.