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December 14, 2017  
REFERENCE: Ask an Expert

Below are some of the most-recently-answered questions from our Medical Experts. We recommend you read over these questions to see if your question has already been answered.

My mother is 91 and has venous leg ulcers which recur even with 4 layer bandaging. I am not getting answers to my question of the professionals! As she is very elderly, is there any REAL hope of these things being cured? I think not, myself, and that she should be made comfortable. Her curculation is very poor in her lower legs and she has had vein stripping surgery some years ago. Any bright ideas as we live in Australia and 4 layers of bandages are driving her mad! Well, nearly! And she cannot shower easily! If there is no real chance of a cure she would rather just put up with them and enjoy her twice-daily showers she once enjoyed and her swims in the ocean too!

Question submitted by: Janet Setter - [email protected]

Dr. Swanson
Terry Swanson Terry Swanson is a Wound Management Consultant at South West Healthcare, Warrnambool, Victoria, Australia. Terry completed her nursing in Springfield, Illinois and was a Neurosurgical nurse before immigrating to Australia in 1988. She developed an interest in perioperative nursing and wound management in the early 90’s. Terry completed her post-graduate education in 1996 and was appointed as a wound management consultant in 1997 at South West Healthcare. She manages a nurse-led regional and outpatient wound management service. Terry was a successful candidate for the Nurse Practitioner Victorian Project in 1999/2000 and will be seeking endorsement as a Nurse Practitioner (Wound Management) in 2001. Terry is active professionally by participating on various state and national committees. She is the Vice President of the Australian Wound Management Association, as well as the immediate past president of the Victorian Wound Management Association.

Terry is currently undertaking study at the University of South Australia, completing a Masters level advanced pharmacology course. Her professional interests include education, mentoring, lecturing, and advocating for nursing and patient's rights.

The information that you provided is a little confusing. If your mother has enough arterial circulation and has a definite diagnosis of venous ulceration then there is wound healing potential even for her advanced age. Four layering bandaging is an effective and proven method to heal venous ulcers. With any treatment choice, the person affected should make a decision with the help from a health professional after options are presented and discussed. The whole person has to be treated not just the ulcers on the leg. I would urge you to discuss your concerns with your mother and the health professional who is treating her. Be honest and ask about what options there are, define what the priorities are and then develop mutual goals. Terry Swanson RN WMC (Australia)

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