Assessment of Leg Ulcer

Topics: Vein, Deep vein, Deep vein thrombosis Pages: 2 (462 words) Published: May 13, 2012
The focus of this assignment is to he focus of this assignment will be on a case scenario of an elderly lady with signs of a chronic venous leg ulcer. It will discuss the epidemiology, aetiology and the pathophysiology in relation to venous leg ulcers, as well as this also discussed will be the nursing care needs of a patient with a leg ulcer and a rationale of care will be given. It will look at the assessment process and take into account the patients life history and examine any factors that could relate to the patients condition. The assignment will also discuss the management of treatment and preventative measures. Aetiology, epidemiology and pathophysiology A leg ulcer is a breakdown of epidermal and dermal tissue, which is below the knee on the leg or foot which fails to heal (Moffat and Harper 1997). It can also be described as a loss of skin below the knee which takes more than 6 weeks to heal, the occurrence of leg ulcers increases with age and is most common in woman (Watson 2002). A venous leg ulcer is defined as an ulceration that is associated with venous hypertension arising from venous disease (NHS 2009). Veins in the body are thin walled vessels that return blood to the heart through the action of skeletal muscle pumps (Morison and Moffatt 1994). The venous system has valves that prevent the retrograde or backward flow of blood. The venous system in the leg has two main components, the superficial veins and deep venous channels, communicating veins connect these two (Porth 2002). Blood from the skin and the subcutaneous tissues flows from the superficial veins through the communicating veins and into the deep venous channels, it then returns to the heart. At regular intervals, usually at junctions where two veins meet, there are venous valves that prevent retrograde blood flow (Tortora and Grabowski 2000). The action of the leg muscles assist in this movement of venous blood back to the heart. The muscle pumps are located in the gastrocnemius and...
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