7, 5, 2020

What your skin says about your vascular health

2021-11-05T04:08:48-07:00

Darkening of the skin around the ankles may indicate chronic venous reflux disease, a condition of the vein valves, detectable by ultrasound.

venous leg ulcers

Chronic venous insufficiency (CVI) can cause the skin to become discolored, usually around the ankles. Over time, ulcerations or skin wounds may develop.

Over time, leakage of the blood into the area surrounding the veins can cause tissue to die. The resulting pooling of blood in the tissue causes a darkening of the skin. It is at this stage that the skin is actually stained by your own blood.  This is also known as venous stasis skin changes, skin hyperpigmentation, or venous stasis dermatitis because the skin is often inflamed, itchy and eczema-like.  This is most frequently caused by venous reflux, an underlying condition that can be treated. When skin changes like these are present, the condition is termed chronic venous insufficiency.  Over time, the skin condition may worsen and the skin may become darker, firm to touch, scaly and itchy, and the skin may break down causing a venous leg ulcer.

What your skin says about your vascular health2021-11-05T04:08:48-07:00

8, 4, 2020

What Your Ankles Say About Your Health

2021-11-13T13:50:53-08:00

5 signs of venous reflux disease were found on the ankles

venous reflux disease were found on the ankles

Venous reflux disease refers to ‘leaky valves in the leg veins. It is also referred to as venous insufficiency. When the one-way valves that help blood in the veins flow from the feet to the heart, no longer work properly, blood begins to pool around the ankles. Over time, the pooling of blood causes increased hydrostatic pressure within the blood vessels. This is referred to as venous hypertension in the medical community. Venous hypertension is associated with chronic venous insufficiency, which means the vein valves have become leaky for a long time before physical signs are apparent. An ultrasound examination can first identify if the underlying veins are weak and leaky not visible to the naked eye, long before physical signs become apparent. Some signs you may see that may indicate underlying venous reflux disease include:

chronic venous insufficiency or venous reflux disease

Darkening of skin, and itchiness are a sign of chronic venous insufficiency or venous reflux disease

  1. Skin darkening around the ankle (hyperpigmentation). This is also referred to as venous stasis. This is a result of long-standing venous reflux or pooling of blood.
  2. Itchy, scaly skin around the ankles. This is referred to as venous eczema. This skin becomes itchy and scaly from chronic inflammation.
  3. spider veins in the inner ankle. These are commonly associated with venous reflux in the great saphenous vein. The great saphenous vein courses the ankle all the way to the groin. When blood pools from thigh upper thigh all the way to the ankle, small spider veins may appear in the ankle. These are commonly perceived as cosmetic because most people don’t realize there is an underlying problem.
  4. ankle swelling (edema). There are many causes for ankle swelling. Some are serious like heart conditions where others are less serious like a salty diet. When ankle swelling is present talk to your doctor about the various causes. However, one of the most common causes of ankle swelling is venous reflux disease. Anyone who has ankle swelling can benefit from an ultrasound examination to determine if venous reflux disease is present.
  5. skin ulceration and breakdown in the ankle. Over time, pooling of blood in the ankles and venous hypertension causes the skin to darken, it can become scaly and itchy and eventually ulcerate because the skin breaks down from chronic inflammation. This is called a venous leg ulcer. Venous leg ulcers are treated by treating the underlying venous reflux disease.

All of these signs and symptoms can be reduced by treating the underlying problem, venous reflux disease. See our treatments page to better understand treatment options.

What Your Ankles Say About Your Health2021-11-13T13:50:53-08:00

23, 7, 2014

What is Stasis Dermatitis?

2021-11-05T13:05:00-07:00

Stasis dermatitis or venous stasis dermatitis is a change in the skin that occur when blood collects (pools) in the veins of the lower leg. ‘Stasis’ refers to pooling of the blood in the lower legs from venous insufficiency, and ‘dermatitis’ refers to the inflammation and related skin changes. Because of the inflammation, the skin around the ankles is usually itchy and discolored.

At first, the skin of the ankles and lower legs may look thin or tissue-like. You may slowly get brown stains on the skin.

The skin may become irritated or crack if you scratch it. It may also become red or swollen, crusted, or weepy.

Over time, some skin changes become permanent:

  • Thickening and hardening of the skin on the legs and ankles (lipodermatosclerosis)
  • A bumpy or cobblestone appearance of the skin
  • Dark brown color
Stasis Dermatitis with Ulceration

Chronic venous insufficiency over time can lead to skin changes and eventually ulceration. This image demonstrates stasis dermatitis (also known as venous dermatitis). Stasis dermatitis refers to the skin changes including skin discoloration around the ankles, dry itchy skin that can be thin, and it may eventually break down to cause an ulceration. You need to see a doctor if these signs are present.

Skin sores (ulcers) may develop (called a venous ulcer or stasis ulcer). These most often form on the inside of the ankle.  For this reason, whenever stasis dermatitis or skin changes are noticed around the ankle, you should see your doctor or vein specialist to stop the progression of venous insufficiency and prevent the skin from forming an ulceration.

  

 

What is Stasis Dermatitis?2021-11-05T13:05:00-07:00

26, 6, 2014

8 Warning Signs of Vein Disease: #2 Discoloration of the Skin

2021-11-03T17:41:45-07:00

Discoloration of the Skin

Over time, leakage of the blood into the area surrounding the veins can cause tissue to die. The resulting pooling of blood in the tissue causes a darkening of the skin. It is at this stage that the skin is actually stained by your own blood.  This is also known as venous stasis skin changes, skin hyperpigmentation, or venous stasis dermatitis because the skin is often inflamed, itchy, and eczema-like.  This is most frequently caused by venous reflux, an underlying condition that can be treated. When skin changes like these are present, the condition is termed chronic venous insufficiency. Over time, the skin condition may worsen and the skin may become darker, firm to touch, scaly, and itchy, and the skin may break down causing a venous leg ulcer.

8 Warning Signs of Vein Disease: #2 Discoloration of the Skin2021-11-03T17:41:45-07:00
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