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Reducing Closure Time and the Recurrence of Lower Extremity Wounds

Presenter: James McGuire, DPM, PT, LPed, FAPWHc

Lower extremity ulcers, especially diabetic foot ulcers (DFUs) and venous leg ulcers (VLUs), can be difficult to manage, and wound closure sometimes takes many months to achieve. Ulcer recurrence is also a major clinical challenge. Wound care clinicians should be aware of interventions to support wounds on an expedient path to closure to prevent complications resulting from wound chronicity and recurrence, including infection, amputation, or even death.


Treatment Interventions for Lower Extremity Wounds: How and What to Choose

Lower extremity ulcers, whether venous, arterial, or diabetic ulcers, impose a heavy burden on patients and the health care system. The importance of ulcer prevention and, in patients with these wounds, a multifaceted approach to management cannot be overstated. Wound care professionals who treat patients with lower extremity ulcers will appreciate this practical guide to the evaluation and evidence-based treatment of these difficult wounds, with a focus on optimal clinical outcomes.


Quick Facts – Lower Extremity Wounds

Download Quick Facts – Lower Extremity Wounds and share it within your facility. This two-page fact sheet was created to support staff education on the latest information on lower extremity wounds, including methods to prevent wound recurrence. The print-friendly format is perfect for posting on the bulletin board or distributing to your nursing staff at in-service.

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How Much Do You Know About Lower Extremity Wounds?

Take our 10-question quiz to find out!

Terms to Know: Lower Extremity Wounds

Collateral circulation: A collateral blood vessel circuit that may be adapted or remodeled to minimize the use of occluded arteries. Collateralization may offset some of the physiological signs of peripheral artery disease, such as maintaining a normal capillary refill.

Critical limb ischemia: A severe form of peripheral arterial disease in which a severe blockage of the arteries of the lower extremities reduces blood flow. It is a chronic condition that is often characterized by wounds of the lower extremity.

Dependent rubor: A light red to dusky-red coloration that is visible when the leg is in a dependent position (such as hanging off the edge of a table) but not when it is elevated above the heart. The presence of dependent rubor is often an indicator of underlying peripheral arterial disease. When the leg is raised above the level of the heart, its color will normalize.


Venous vs. Arterial Wounds: Differential Diagnosis and Interventions

Lower extremity ulcers, such as venous and arterial ulcers, can be complex and costly and can cause social distress. An estimated 1% of the adult population is affected…

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Reducing the Recurrence of Lower Extremity Wounds

Lower extremity wounds such as diabetic foot ulcers (DFUs), venous ulcers, and arterial ulcers have been linked to poor patient outcomes, such as patient mortality…

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Cellular Restoration of Leg and Foot Ulcers

Chronic wounds pose an ongoing challenge for clinicians, and there needs to be a clearer understanding of the pathophysiology of wound chronicity…

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Lower Extremity Wounds: The Patient Impact

Wounds of the lower extremity, such as chronic venous leg ulcers and diabetic foot ulcers, often have a severe impact on patients’ quality of life. Symptoms may…

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Diagnosis and Treatment Strategies

Lower extremity wounds can be difficult to heal and often have high recurrence rates. Health care professionals must make sure they correctly diagnose lower extremity wounds before planning a course of treatment to ensure the best possible outcomes for their patient. Watch this brief overview video to learn more about lower extremity wounds and the educational resources made available during this month’s Practice Accelerator.

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