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Research Letter |

Ankle Range of Motion, Leg Pain, and Leg Edema Improvement in Patients With Venous Leg Ulcers

Joshua D. Fox, BS1; Katherine L. Baquerizo-Nole, MD2; Jeremy B. Freedman, BA1; Sophia Liu, BS1; Freya Van Driessche, MD1; Elizabeth Yim, MD1; Robert S. Kirsner, MD, PhD1
[+] Author Affiliations
1Department of Dermatology and Cutaneous Surgery, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, Florida
2Department of Medicine, Nassau University Medical Center, Nassau, New York
JAMA Dermatol. 2016;152(4):472-474. doi:10.1001/jamadermatol.2015.5637.
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This pilot study examines the effectiveness of compression therapy in treating pain, neuropathy, and reduced ankle range of motion in patients with venous leg ulcers.

Venous leg ulcers (VLUs) affect 2.2% of Americans older than 64 years, costing the US health care system roughly $14.9 billion annually.1 The lower extremity venous system is part of the calf muscle pump, and dysfunction (chronic venous insufficiency [CVI]) can cause ulceration).2,3 Reduced ankle range of motion (AROM), alone, or in conjunction with other factors such as CVI, can lead to calf muscle-pump dysfunction and subsequently to sustained ambulatory venous pressures, which is an integral factor in venous ulcerogenesis.3,4 Patients with VLUs have reduced AROM compared with patients diagnosed with venous disease without ulcers, or those without venous disease. Patients diagnosed with VLUs also have undiagnosed neuropathy.3,5 Compression therapy has been shown to improve healing of VLUs.4 The purpose of this study is to elucidate how compression therapy—standard care for VLUs—affects pain, neuropathy, and AROM, and how these variables relate to each other. We hypothesized that compression will reduce leg circumference and improve pain, AROM, and neuropathy.

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