It is usual for anyone to hurt their leg from either falling or knocking against the door or table. Most of the time, the wounded area heals within two weeks. If your wound shows no signs of healing after several weeks, it is essential to seek professional help from Atur Kasha DO because it could indicate an underlying problem. The following explains why a wound on your legs may not heal and the causes for a non-healing wound.
Why might leg wounds not heal?
It is more difficult for a wound on the leg to heal than that on other body parts. Blood circulation in your legs and feet tends to be poor due to the long hours you may spend in a stationary position. Inadequate blood supply also means fewer nutrients and oxygen get to your legs. The positioning of the legs in your body may not favor wound healing due to the mentioned reason. Other factors such as obesity may even worsen the problem.
Causes of non-healing wounds
- Venous insufficiency
Venous hypertension, commonly known as venous insufficiency or disease, is the improper functioning of the valves in your veins. The problem mainly affects the veins in your legs but can be present in other body parts like your arms. Usually, valves open, allowing blood flow to the heart and close to prevent the blood from flowing back. In patients with venous insufficiency, these valves become weak and allow backflow of blood. When blood pools in the veins, it causes swelling, and some of the blood gets into your skin tissue.
The skin gets swollen, making it difficult for the wound to heal. You may also notice skin discoloration and leaking in the wound.
- Peripheral arterial disease
Peripheral arterial disease is a circulatory condition in which the arteries that supply blood to the legs become narrow. Narrowing of the arteries may be due to the accumulation of fatty deposits and fibrous material inside the vessels, a condition known as atherosclerosis. Atherosclerosis is mainly linked to heart diseases such as stroke, but it can also affect the arteries in your legs. Wounds in your legs may not heal due to constricted arteries which limit oxygen and nutrient supply. Unfortunately, there is no cure for PAD, and treatment mainly focuses on preventing disease progression.
Uncontrolled diabetes can result in complications such as peripheral arterial disease, which can cause a non-healing wound.
Lifestyle changes to promote healing
Eat healthy foods, especially vegetables, fruits, and lots of protein. Body-building foods such as eggs and pulses help the body repair damaged cells and tissues. If you have a slow-healing wound, you may need to increase your regular protein intake up to three times
Engage in low-impact exercises such as walking and cycling at least three times every week. Exercise strengthens your leg muscles, facilitating blood circulation.
Do not stand or sit for long periods because this causes poor blood circulation. Move your feet in circles regularly, as this helps with blood circulation.
If a month is over and your wound is yet to heal, reserve a session with your doctor at Desert West Vein & Surgery Center to establish the cause of your problem.