Physical activity and adherence to compression therapy in patients with venous leg ulcers
- MM Heinen, C van der Vleuten, MJ de Rooij, CJ Uden, AW Evers, T. van Achterberg
- Arch Dermatol
OBJECTIVE Menopause status has been associated with an increase in venous diseases and lower limb-related symptoms. The purpose of our study was to evaluate pain associated with chronic venous insufficiency and its risk factors in postmenopausal women. METHODS A controlled cross-sectional study was performed in 139 postmenopausal women with chronic venous insufficiency and 40 control women. Pain was assessed with a visual analogue scale, the McGill Pain Questionnaire, and the Pain Matcher (Cefar Medical AB, Lund, Sweden). The influence of several demographic and clinical risk factors was analyzed using bivariate and multivariate regression analyses. RESULTS Women in the chronic venous insufficiency group had significantly higher pain intensity and significantly lower pain threshold (P = 0.001) than the control group. The level of pain was independently and significantly associated with venous refill time and osteoarthritis index scores. It was not associated with other risk factors or with disease severity according to the clinical, etiological, anatomical, and pathophysiological classification. CONCLUSIONS Venous pain is a consistent symptom in postmenopausal women with chronic venous insufficiency, in whom nociceptive thresholds are generally decreased. Reduced physical activity, venous reflux, and osteoarthritis seem to influence pain level in chronic venous insufficiency.