15% of people in the community develop chronic venous hypertension in their legs because of varicose veins. Unlike “Arterial” hypertension, “Venous” hypertension causes tissue damage due to an accumulation of waste metabolites and a build up of fluid leaking into the subcutaneous tissues under the skin.

After a number of years inflammation of the subcutaneous tissue leads to lipodermatosclerosis where there is damage to the lymphatic system and degeneration of the fat tissue. The skin becomes darkly pigmented, paper thin and vulnerable to injury.

Unfortunately 1-2% of people in the community will develop skin ulceration. This condition can also occur at an early age as we have treated people with skin ulceration in their mid-thirties. Treatment of varicose veins will abolish venous hypertension and prevent skin damage from occurring.

Venous Ulcer on a female patient with untreated Varicose Veins.

Venous Ulcer on a female patient with untreated Varicose Veins.

Lipodermatosclerosis due to untreated Varicose Veins.

Lipodermatosclerosis due to untreated Varicose Veins.

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AuthorNicholas Kemp