Identifying risk factors and protective factors for venous leg ulcer recurrence using a theoretical approach: A longitudinal study.
As leg ulcer research has generally focused on aspects of treatment, the psychosocial impact of leg ulceration remains understudied. This article reports the findings of a study exploring the prevalence of anxiety and depression in 190 patients with chronic venous ulceration across 9 Trusts in the northwest of England. The hospital anxiety and depression scale (HADS) was used to screen patients for the presence of anxiety and depression using a cut-off point of 9 for level of "caseness". A total of 52 (27%) people scored as depressed while 50 (26%) scored as anxious. The two symptoms which appeared to be associated with anxiety and depression were pain and odour, while there was no association found between living alone, mobility and exudate. These findings suggest that the focus of care needs to be redirected for many patients for whom cure is not an option, but who are left to live with a chronic wound. Furthermore, psychological factors, including depression, should be a focus in assessment and ongoing review of patients with leg ulceration.