In high-income countries, as many as 1% of the population suffer from a leg ulcer at some time in their life. Of these ulcers, 70% will be venous in origin and 22% arterial (Broderick, Pagnamenta, Forster, 2020). Although venous ulcers generally respond well to compression therapy, arterial ulcers have a different aetiology and therefore, their management is different. Occasionally, people may have a combination of both types of ulcers. It is essential to identify the type of leg ulcer a person has before initiating a course of management. This Course will assist you, the health professional, to care appropriately for a person experiencing a leg ulcer.
- Defining leg ulcers;
- Lower limb assessment;
- Important differences between a venous and arterial ulcer;
- When is compression safe to use?;
- Compression therapy application dos and don'ts.
Identifying the type of leg ulcer a person has is crucial to appropriate care planning and healing. Therefore, a correct assessment of the lower limb is a critical aspect of care. Compression therapy used to treat venous ulcers promotes healing and is a recognised primary management strategy.
To safely and effectively initiate, apply and monitor compression therapy clinicians require appropriate training, skills and confidence. Where this is lacking, patients who should benefit are not always offered compression therapy. Increased appropriate use of compression therapy to manage leg ulcers would result in improved quality of life, patient health outcomes and significant savings to the healthcare budget of governments, service providers and patients.
Assist health professionals to safely and effectively manage patients’ leg ulcers through the correct application of compression therapy to the lower limb.
- Patients in your care will receive effective lower limb assessment and appropriate care planning.
- Apply the principles of selection and application of compression therapy as management for leg ulcers for specific patients.
- Explain and educate patients and other team members about the role and types of compression therapy in the management of leg ulcers.
Registered nurses and healthcare professionals who manage people with chronic venous as well as arterial insufficiency and leg ulcers through the use of compression therapy.
No conflict of interest exists for anyone in the position to control content for this activity. Wherever possible, generic or non-proprietary names of medications or products have been used.