What is stasis dermatitis?
If you notice a person’s skin becoming weak, thin, and discolored chances are they may have one of the nine forms of eczema called stasis dermatitis or venous eczema. This condition largely affects a person’s legs.
Stasis dermatitis is also referred to as varicose eczema and is actually a venuos disease. It is usually is accompanied by a form of eczema referred to as stasis dermatitis (other names include gravitational eczema, gravitational dermatitis, or varicose eczema).
What are some of the symptoms of stasis dermatitis?
The symptoms include red spots or lesions which are not ope and accompanied by some swelling. Around the lower leg area and ankles, you may also notice the skin has become thicker in texture looking similar to that of an ankle sprain.
The inflammation can also lead to skin irritation and itchiness which are the tell tale signs of stasis dermatitis (egzema). This problems is a rash of the lower legs caused primarily by a poor return of blood to the heart. The normal symptoms include a red rash on the lower leg or ankle areas accompanied by some swelling and pain. The skin can also become scaly and may ooze, crust or even crack.
What age group of people does stasis dermatitis normally attack?
This problem usually is found among elderly people that begin to experience blood circulation problems. Interestingly, women are more affected than men.
This is normally the result of some problems affecting the valves in the veins which causing a pooling of blood. Thus, the tissue in this area develops back pressure along with fluid retention.
Stasis dermatitis affects 15-20 million people over the age of 50.
Does stasis dermatitis affect both legs?
No, stasis dermatitis (venous eczema) can affect only one leg and normally is accompanied by varicose veins. These are blood vessels that no longer functions properly and become twisted, swollen or injured to the point that they turn dark blue or even purple in color. Another significant characteristic of varicose veins is pooling of the blood. Severe exema may also affect the same leg due to the inadequate blood flow to that limb.
Treatment of stasis dermatitis
Current treatment for venous eczema is broken up into two areas; treatment of the swelling and treatment for the dermatitis.
Treatment for the swelling and reducing pressure in the venous system
- Don’t stand for long periods.
- Take regular walks.
- Elevate your feet when sitting. The goal here is to improve circulation to the legs if they’re swollen. To be effective, your feet should be elevated above your hips.
- Use bed lifters to elevate the foot of your bed overnight.
- Wear special graduated compression stockings or even compression boots for the long term.
- Horse chestnut extract appears to be of benefit for at least some patients with venous disease.
Treatment for the stasis dermatitis
- If you develop oozing patches of skin, the can be dried up potassium permanganate or dilute vinegar on gauze as compresses.
- If you develop a secondary infection, oral antibiotics such as flucloxacillin could be utilized.
- Apply a prescribed low-topical steroid to help reduce inflammation. Apply daily and start with a potent steroid cream directly to the patches until they have flattened out. Once you notice improvement, graduate to a steroid cream like hydrocortisone until the itchy patches have been eliminated. Another type of ointment that has shown promise is coal tar ointment.
- Keep the skin on the legs smooth and soft by using a moisturizing cream
- Avoid scratching of itching because it will inflame and make the dermatitis worse
- Protect your skin from injury because this can result in infection or ulceration.
You can read additional articles related to eczema at the following links: