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Little Rock, AR
A 41-year-old female asked:

Do you have to get an abi test done before you can use compression or an unna boot on a stasis ulcer ?

4 doctor answers8 doctors weighed in
Dr. Richard Sheppeck
Vascular Surgery 36 years experience
Sometimes: If your provider cannot palpate pedal pulses then it is a very good idea to get a noninvasive arterial evaluation before compression therapy.. If pulses are easy to feel and normal then abi's are not needed.
Dr. Norman Bein
General Surgery 51 years experience
No: Stasis ulcers are almost always due to venous incompetence for which unna boots are a treatment but definitely not a cure.The abi test measures the resistance that arteries of the leg are pushing against and not related to venous problems...Arterial ulcers are another matter entirely.
Dr. Scott Bolhack
Wound care 35 years experience
Compression: Great question. The edict "first do no harm" is important. In order to determine the correct and maximal compression for you, you should have some testing of the arterial tree to make sure it is safe to compress.
Dr. Ted King
A Verified Doctoranswered
A US doctor answeredLearn more
Not necessarily: There are other simple ways to determine the state of your arterial tree without checking an abi. Taking a good history and seeing if you have risk factors for peripheral arterial disease, checking your pulses and seeing long long it takes your toes to pink up after they have been squeezed can give a good idea about whether you need an abi done or not. If there is doubt though, an abi is needed.

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Last updated Feb 6, 2019

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