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Diagnosis of venous disease and use of Doppler assessment

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The statistics on leg ulceration are startling, with one in 500 people living with some form of leg ulceration that demands a large amount of NHS resources both in cost and clinician time. 1,2

The impact that leg ulceration has on patients cannot be ignored and, in reality, patients rely on the clinician's expert knowledge and intervention to improve their condition.

Effective assessment skills
Managing leg ulceration in clinical practice is challenging and requires the clinician to possess effective assessment skills and wound care knowledge to be able to implement suitable evidence-based care plans acceptable to patients and clinician.

Most nurses in primary care are actively involved in the management of patients with leg ulceration, or are aware of these patients, but it is worthwhile considering whether any interventions could be carried out to 'prevent' the occurrence of ulceration in the first place through identifying venous problems in a timely manner.

This article will focus on the assessment and recognition of venous hypertension/disease and Doppler assessment for calculating ankle brachial pressure index.

Venous ulceration is the most common type of ulceration accounting for 70 per cent of all cases and is generally the one that nurses can have the most positive impact on through the application of non-surgical treatments and intervention.3

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