Updated June 14, 2019
Stasis dermatitis is a medical condition that causes major changes in the appearance and feel of the skin in your legs. Stasis dermatitis occurs when a pool of blood collects in the veins in the lower portion of the legs. Stasis dermatitis is an extremely painful and dangerous condition that only gets worse over time, so it is vitally important to get checked out immediately if you start to experience any symptoms associated with the disease.
The primary symptoms associated with stasis dermatitis are skin discoloration, itching and scaly skin. While your skin may itch, scratching will only make the problem worse. Irritating the skin further with scratching will cause ulcers to form on your already damaged legs.
The skin discoloration will start out as small brown spots on the legs, but it will progressively get worse as time passes. If your stasis dermatitis is left untreated for long enough, then most of your leg will turn a dark brown color.
Prior to feeling the symptoms of stasis dermatitis, you will most likely experience symptoms associated with poor circulation in the legs. These symptoms are leg swelling, heavy legs and leg pain that gets worse after standing. This is because chronic poor circulation in the legs called venous insufficiency is the main cause of stasis dermatitis.
Venous insufficiency makes it hard for the veins in your legs to send blood back to the heart. This causes blood to start to build up and collect in the lower legs, which will potentially cause stasis dermatitis.
The skin discoloration and ulcers associated with stasis dermatitis will become permanent if you do not address the underlying cause in a timely manner. All of the treatment options for this condition will involve attempting to improve the blood circulation in your legs. You may be asked to wear compression stockings and keep your legs elevated while seated.
You should also avoid standing for long periods of time. If this does not start to improve your symptoms, then you may have to undergo surgery or another procedure on your veins to rectify the problem.
Stasis dermatitis is a chronic illness that can potentially become permanent if you are not careful. Since a lot of conditions can cause itchy and scaly legs, the best symptom to look out for is leg discoloration. Your legs will not change colors for no reason. If you start to notice brown spots on the legs, then you are most likely suffering from stasis dermatitis.
Consult with our board certified vascular surgeon, Dr. Jose Almeida, at Miami Vein Center in Miami immediately and you can limit any problems caused by this painful condition. Contact us today to schedule your appointment.