PM - Find your leg club
PM - About Leg Ulcers
PM - About Cellulitis
PM - Info for members
PM - Videos & Leaflets
PM - What happens at a leg club
PM - Info for Cyclists
PM - Find out more

How do I prevent a venous leg ulcer?

Leg ulcers are common in the older adult population, but we can help to prevent breaks to the skin by following simple aspects of daily care. 

The skin is the largest organ in the body and does a great job of protecting us from outside elements and keeping all our organs and muscles in place. As we advance in age so does our skin, it loses collagen and elasticity and becomes thinner and more fragile. This makes it vulnerable to knocks and tears which if on the lower leg can result in leg ulcers if the venous system is insufficient.  

It is important to look after our skin and we can do this with a daily routine.  
  • Wash the skin using a PH balanced soap or cleanser to stop it drying out further. The skins natural PH is around 5.5. Do not forget the feet and toes to prevent fungal infection. 
  • Pat dry don’t rub, or tears may occur.  
  • Apply an emollient to moisturise the skin, check for any dry areas, cracks or callous to the feet too. Contact a chiropodist if you need help in foot/nail care. A final stroke downwards prevents hair follicles becoming blocked and infected. 
  • Compression hosiery or wraps systems are recommended to aid vein health and reduce any symptoms associated with venous disease. 
  • Be aware of your environment to reduce knocks and tears to the skin. Is there any low furniture in your path? Could you protect your legs when gardening or in other activities? 
  • Nutrition and hydration is vital for good skin health. The NHS Eatwell plate gives us advice on a well-balanced dietary intake and to drink 6-8 glasses of fluid daily such as water and unsweetened tea or coffee.  
  • Keep moving! All exercise is good for the circulation whether it is chair based, tapping the feet, or doing the waltz! Check our Mr Motivators tips on this website.  
Healthy Legs for Life - PFD Download