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Ulcers in obesity related chronic venous insufficiency

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    Williamsville, NY

    Vein Treatment Center and www.VeinsVeinsVeins.com


    Summary of published research regarding the role of obesity in developing venous stasis ulcers in patients with venous insufficiency.


    The article was published by Scholl L1 Dörler M, and Stücker M from the following institutions:


    Klinik für Dermatologie, Venerologie und Allergologie, Venenzentrum der Dermatologischen und Gefäßchirurgischen KlinikenRuhr Universität Bochum Bochum Deutschland. 

    The authors' aim for this study was to describe the typical features of venous ulceration in obese patients with venous insufficiency.


    Seven patients with ulcerations of the lower limbs in obesity-associated chronic venous insufficiency were examined. Duplex sonography was performed; reflux or stenosis as well as a peripheral arterial occlusive disease was excluded.


    The researchers showed that in all patients with obesity that they studied, the duplex sonographic examination showed no evidence of reflux or obstruction. However, multiple ulcers were found located on the proximal or ventrolateral lower limb. Most of them occurred posttraumatically or after insect bites with typical signs of chronic venous disease including hyperpigmentation and erythema.


    The cause of obesity-associated chronic venous insufficiency has been associated with an increased intraabdominal pressure due to abdominal fat masses. It leads to venous hypertension. Therapy consists of consequent compression therapy combined with suitable wound care, weight reduction, and regular exercise.


    Dr Karamanoukian's note - It is not clear from the abstract of this study if measurements were made in the upright position to unmask underlyiing venous insufficiency or not. However, chronic venous insufficiency is common in obese patients and does contribute to the trophic changes described. Obese patients should seek medical guidance early when they develop trophic skin changes in order to prevent local infectiona and cellulitis which exacerbate this progressive condition.