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Stasis Dermatitis

Severe stasis dermatitis on the lower leg and foot: Poor blood flow leads to these skin changes.

This condition develops in people who have poor circulation. Because poor blood flow usually occurs in the lower legs, this is where stasis dermatitis often develops. It may occur in one or both legs. Stasis dermatitis can develop in other areas, but this is rare.

Stasis dermatitis is most common in the lower legs because leg veins have one-way valves, which play an important role in circulating our blood. These valves push blood up the legs. As we age, these valves can weaken and stop working properly. Some blood can leak out and pool in the legs. Your dermatologist may refer to this as “venous (vee-nis) insufficiency.”

If you’ve been diagnosed with venous insufficiency, it does not mean that you will get stasis dermatitis. Watching for signs and symptoms of stasis dermatitis is important though. Treatment and self-care can prevent stasis dermatitis from becoming severe.

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