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Venous Leg Ulcers: Complications

Presenter: Dr. Alison J. Garten

Venous leg ulcers (VLUs) affect between 1% and 3% of the total US population and are especially prevalent in older adults. These wounds can be difficult to treat and often have high associated costs, as well as high recurrence rates. Understanding the etiology of VLUs and treating the underlying causes are vital to achieving closure with these wounds. Compression therapy is standard of care both for treatment and prevention of recurrence with VLUs, and clinicians should ensure they have proper knowledge of appropriate application of compression therapy.


Venous Leg Ulcers: Introduction to Management Techniques

Venous insufficiency results from venous hypertension, which, left untreated, can lead to skin breakdown and the formation of venous leg ulcers (VLUs). VLUs are common and, unfortunately, stubborn chronic wounds that diminish patients’ quality of life, contribute to morbidity and mortality, and are costly to treat. This guide presents practical information on the latest best practices for prevention and treatment of VLUs.

Quick Facts – Venous Leg Ulcers

This fact sheet contains important information on VLUs, including predisposing conditions, diagnostic testing, and therapeutic options. Wound care professionals will find it helpful for optimizing clinical outcomes in their patients with VLUs. The print-friendly format is perfect for posting on the bulletin board or distributing to your nursing staff at in-service.

How Much Do You Know Venous Leg Ulcers?

Take our 10-question quiz to find out!

Venous Leg Ulcers: Important Terms to Know

Atrophie blanche: The term describing pale, morphologic scarring on the lower leg or foot; it occurs when blood supply is poor and healing is prolonged.

Biological debridement: The use of maggots grown in a sterile environment to consume and digest dead tissue and pathogens.

Cadexomer iodine: A water-soluble polymer topical agent containing 0.9% iodine (gel) or 4.7% iodine (ointment), which can be used to minimize the risk of infection and promote effective treatment of venous ulcers.


Diagnosis and Pathophysiology of Venous Leg Ulcers

The most common type of chronic lower extremity wound is the venous ulcer, affecting 1% to 3% of the U.S. population. Chronic venous ulcers significantly impact…

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Venous Leg Ulcers and Infection

The venous leg ulcer (VLU) is the most common type of chronic leg wound, and it can be challenging to manage. VLUs account for up to 90% of all chronic leg ulcers. Proper diagnosis and treatment planning…

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Understanding Comorbidities Affecting Venous Leg Ulcers

Venous ulcers pose a worldwide problem that comes with high recurrence rates, risk of infection, and substantial costs to treat. Health care professionals must be…

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Clinical Pathways for Management of Venous Leg Ulcers

Venous ulcers are known to be complex and costly. There is an array of evidence-based treatment options available to help formulate a comprehensive treatment…

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Managing Venous Leg Ulcers

With high rates of recurrence, infection, and associated costs, venous leg ulcers (VLUs) can be difficult to heal. Combined with the fact that VLUs are one of the most common lower extremity wounds, it is vital that clinicians understand how to properly assess, treat, and prevent VLUs. Watch this brief overview video to learn more about VLU management and the educational resources made available on VLUs during this month’s Practice Accelerator program.

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