Services at Banner Boswell Medical Center  

Non-Healing Ulcers

patient talking to doctor

Banner Boswell Medical Center's Wound Center
(623) 832-6580


Banner Boswell Medical Center's Wound Center offers expertise in treating different types of ulcers, including:

Pressure Ulcers are formed when skin and tissue are compressed between two hard surfaces. The decrease in circulation and oxygen to the area causes tissue damage which results in the development of wounds.

These ulcers usually begin below skin level and are most frequently located on the hips, buttocks or heels. Pressure ulcers can occur after as little as one or two hours.

Risk factors for developing pressure ulcers:

  • Confined to a bed or wheelchair
  • Unable to move or shift positions without help
  • Loss of bowel or bladder control
  • Poor nutrition
  • Lowered mental awareness
  • Arterial ulcer

Arterial insufficiency causes blockages in the large and small arteries in the legs. This reduces blood flow and causes ulcers that are most frequently located on the lower legs, feet or toes. Patients with arterial insufficiency often have skin changes that include absence of leg hair, thickened toenails and dry, shiny skin.

Ways to reduce the chances of pressure ulcers:

  • No use of tobacco products
  • Control blood pressure, cholesterol and diabetes
  • Inspect legs daily for signs of trauma, redness, pain or wounds
  • Wash and dry feet every day
  • Lubricate skin every day to avoid dry skin and cracking
  • Do not walk barefoot and avoid cuts, scrapes and abrasions
  • Do not wear shoes, stockings or socks that restrict blood flow to the legs and feet
  • Have a podiatrist cut toenails

Venous Stasis Ulcers

Vein inflammation, varicose veins and chronic venous insufficiency lead to damage to the valves in the legs. This in turn results in tissue swelling, increases in pressure and formation of venous ulcers. Patients often notice that their skin turns a brown-purple color near the ankle even before an ulcer appears. These ulcers are most often found on the medial side of the ankle and calf.

Ways to reduce the chances of pressure ulcers:

  • Begin a light exercise program after consulting with your physician
  • No tobacco use, because even light smoking decreases circulation
  • Control high blood pressure, cholesterol and diabetes
  • Wear support stockings as prescribed
  • Avoid crossing your legs
  • Elevate your legs when sitting
  • Inspect your feet, legs and toes daily. Look for swelling, new or larger ulcers or infection
  • Keep legs and feet clean and dry
  • Maintain a healthy diet that is low in sodium

Neuropathic Ulcer (Diabetic Ulcer)

This type of ulcer results from damage to the peripheral nerves most often from diabetes. People with diabetes often lose sensation on the bottom of the foot that results in an inability to recognize pain or pressure. Ulcers then form on the bottom of the foot. 

Banner Boswell Medical Center
10401 W. Thunderbird Blvd.
Sun City, AZ 85351
(623) 832-4000
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