April 11, 2023

ISCHEMIC (Arterial) Ulcers: What You Should Know

ISCHEMIC (Arterial) Ulcers: What You Should Know

ISCHEMIC (Arterial) Ulcers: What You Should Know

WHAT CAUSES ISCHEMIC (IS-KEE-MIC) ULCERS?

  • Ischemic ulcers can happen when blood flow to your leg is limited. This is called ischemic disease
  • Being cold, smoking, and high blood pressure can slow the blood flow to your lower legs

WHAT IS ISCHEMIC DISEASE?

  • Ischemic disease is when you have restricted blood flow to your legs
    You may have all or some of these symptoms:
  • Pain in the lower leg with walking that is relieved by rest
  • Pain in the lower leg while lying in bed
  • Loss of hair on the leg and foot
  • Cold feet

WHAT WILL INCREASE THE RISK OF GETTING ISCHEMIC ULCERS?

  • Diabetes
  • High blood pressure
  • Hardening of the arteries
  • Smoking

WHEN SHOULD I SEE MY HEALTHCARE PROVIDER?

  • If you have: Numbness in one or both of your feet
  • Loss of movement in your legs or feet
  • Color change in your lower legs
  • Redness, blisters or sores on either foot
  • If you have an ulcer, you should see your healthcare provider if there is: Increased pain at your ulcer site
  • Bad smell coming from the wound
  • Change in color or amount of drainage from wound
  • Fever or chills
  • You feel sick to your stomach or are vomiting

WHAT CAN I DO TO HELP PREVENT ISCHEMIC ULCERS?

  • Do not walk barefoot
  • Wear shoes and socks that protect your feet from the cold
  • Protect your legs and feet from injury
  • Inspect your lower legs and feet daily to find problems early
  • Don't smoke
  • Exercise as directed
  • Follow recommended diet