Arterial ulcers can be very painful indeed and are quite difficult to treat.
They are most commonly found on the lower leg – around the ankle or on the foot.
Ulcers are caused by a break in the skin of the leg, which means that air and bacteria can get into the underlying tissue and cause an infection. If the blood cannot flow efficiently through the arteries, then the poor circulation means that the ulcer will not be able to heal as normal. This is known as arterial ulcer.
Arterial ulceration is prone to infection which is often treated by antibiotics, but these will only treat the infection and not the ulcer itself. Ultimately treatment requires an improvement of blood supply to the ulcer, which allows it to start to heal and reduces the pain quite quickly.
Dr Ross Perry says:
“Arterial ulceration’ is not that commonly associated with varicose veins as by definition one is an artery and the other is a vein.
“The ulcers caused by arterial problems are much more difficult to treat and not related in most cases to the varicose veins but they can coexist.”
Arterial ulcers are quite different in nature to venous leg ulcers, which result from broken down varicose veins.
Arterial ulcers tend to result from restrictions to blood vessels due to peripheral vascular disease, chronic vascular insufficiency or vasculitis (inflammatory damage of blood vessels). They are also prevalent in diabetics where diabetic neuropathy results in lack of sensation (leading to more injuries) and decreased blood flow (resulting from thinning arteries).
However, as arterial and venous conditions often coexist, the best treatment will consider the two side by side.
London Vein Treatment Centre
Varicose & Thread Vein Treatment
Cosmedics Skin Clinics offer private treatment for thread veins and varicose veins at their London Vein Treatment Centre. They also offer varicose vein ultrasound scanning for proper diagnosis of any ‘underlying’ vein problems.
For more information or to book a consultation, please complete the form on this web page or call 020 7386 0464.