What Causes Skin Ulcers?


Quick Answer

Venous skin ulcers are caused by bad blood circulation from the leg, while arterial skin ulcers are caused by artery disease, according to WebMD. Neuropathic skin ulcers are caused by diabetic nerve damage, leading people to have little to nonexistent sensation in their feet.

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Full Answer

Several risk factors increase a person's chances of getting venous skin ulcers, explains WebMD. These include standing for long periods of time at work, obesity, smoking, not getting enough physical exercise and deep vein thrombosis. Treatment entails activities that prevent blood from collecting in the legs. Compression stockings, walking every day and lifting legs above the heart are common remedies. Dead tissue may also be excised from the ulcer, and compression stockings should be worn after the ulcer heals to ensure new ulcers do not form. Medicine may be needed after a few months if an ulcer does not heal properly or if an infection occurs.

Skin grafting and vein surgery are options of last resort, states WebMD. Arterial skin ulcers cause severe pain and are typically found on the toes and feet. Neuropathic skin ulcers appear on the feet, notes Cleveland Clinic. They occur because the loss of feeling in the feet and changes in the glands that make sweat allow cracks, calluses and infections to set in and escape notice.

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