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Do I need to see a vein specialist if my leg is swelling?

This question was asked in Ceylon, Ohio and has 11 answer(s) as of 04/30/2013.
I gashed my leg open shaving and the cut was really bad. It took a lot of the skin off. I have been taking care of it. I can put alcohol on it and it doesn't burn so I figured it was healing very well. However, it is red around the wound and my leg is also swollen along with my foot. Do I need to see a vein specialist for this? Can leg wounds cause varicose veins?

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Doctors Answers (11)

First, I would have you see your primary care MD ASAP because it sounds as if you have a skin infection (cellulitis). Perhaps you need to be placed on antibiotics. Stop using alcohol to clean the wound.... it will damage the healing process. Leg wounds in and of themselves are not associated with varicose veins. However, a person with a long history of large varicose veins may develop wounds that don't heal quickly and may develop into leg ulcers.

I suggest you have your leg looked at by your primary care physician to be certain that there is no signs of cellultis (infection). If you have varicose veins then it can complicate your wound healing. The wound itself should not cause varicose veins.

Yes you should see doctor or a specialist . You may have a skin infection or have developed an leg ulcer and they both may need prompt medical attention.

I would be more concerned about an infection given your history. Another possibility would be thrombophlebitis (a clot in a superficial vein). You should follow up with your primary care physician or a vein specialist immediately. If it's an infection you need treatment right away!

Your leg swelling could represent more significant infection. Further evaluation is suggested ASAP. Your legs can also swell when you have varicose vein disease. A vein specialist should be able to help you with either problem. Thanks for your question.

Vein problems can cause swelling. Venous insufficiency and blood clots in the leg veins can both cause swelling. Trauma can also cause vein swelling. Getting an vein ultrasound might be a good idea. By the way, I would not put alcohol on a wound, as it will irritate the tissue. Plain soap and water is best. Maybe some Neosporin after you clean it.

An open wound that bleed with delayed healing and remains red with swelling along the foot should be evaluated by a physician for possible infection, either in the skin (cellulitis) or deeper structures (abscess). If infected, it can progress and expand very quickly and needs to seen and treated if an infection is found. Alcohol is commonly used for cleaning intact skin but is not ideal for wound care as it is too irritating and dehydrates the wound and surrounding skin. Finally, minor wounds such as shaving do not cause varicose veins but deeper wounds and surgeries can cause varicose and spider veins to form.

The new onset of swelling with redness around a wound raises suspicion that there may be an infection associated with the wound. A primary care physician should be able to handle most issues such as this. However, if there is swelling in the leg which has been present for some time, a vein specialist may be able to identify an underlying problem causing the chronic swelling such as venous insufficiency.

No, it doesn't sound like this is a varicose vein problem. You should contact your primary care physician.

Lacerations do not cause varicose veins, so you should see your primary care physician to determine if you have an infection which can cause redness and swelling.

I would encourage you to see a vein specialist. The wound does not cause varicose veins but if you have varicose veins(even a mild case) it could interfere with the wound healing. The fact that you have foot and leg swelling suggests that you may have a blocked vein or reflux in the valves within the vein. These situations can be easily treated.

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