The most common manifestation of stasis dermatitis is development of brown changes in the skin at the inner aspect of the ankle. These changes will worsen over time and will eventually result in development of open poorly-healing wounds called venous stasis ulcers. These changes usually take many years to develop and patients may be treated for years with creams and salves which do not solve the problem. The underlying cause of stasis dermatitis is vein disease.
The key to treatment of stasis dermatitis is to treat the underlying vein disease. Elastic compression, elevating the legs when at rest, avoidance of prolonged sitting and standing are all helpful measures. When one must sit or stand, repetitive ankle exercises are beneficial. For the same reason, exercise such walking or running is helpful.
Patients with stasis dermatitis should by an experienced phlebologist with the aid of a properly performed ultrasound examination.