4330 Barranca Pkwy, Suite 245, Irvine, CA
949 786 7114
Diabetic Foot Ulcer or Wound Care
Diabetic foot ulcer is a wound, sore, or laceration occurring in a patient's feet with diabetes. It usually is an opening that happens on the bottom of the patient's foot. Due to infection or other ulcer-related problems, almost 6 percent of patients who develop diabetic foot ulcers need to be hospitalized.
The main cause of foot amputations in the U.S. is diabetes. Almost 25 percent of patients who develop a foot wound with diabetes might require amputation. In addition, foot ulceration precedes 85 percent of diabetes-related amputations. Therefore, considering the high percentage of amputations, a good podiatrist can help patients prevent developing foot ulcers.
Foot Ulcer Causes
Patients with diabetes usually develop a foot wound. Patients who likely develop an ulcer are mostly older men with diabetes-related kidney, eye, and heart disease. Among the higher risk groups are African Americans, Native Americans, Hispanics. People who use insulin are at higher risk of developing a foot ulcer, as are patients. Alcohol consumption, smoking, and obesity are among the major contributing factors in developing foot ulcers.
Duration of diabetes, foot trauma, poor blood circulation, numbness in the foot, and foot deformities are combination factors causing ulcers in the foot. In addition, neuropathy is a condition that patients with long-term diabetes develop. The disease is caused by nerve damage and high blood sugar and is a partial or complete lack of feeling pain in the foot over time.
In neuropathy, nerve damages happen silently and without pain. Due to this characteristic, the patient may not even know about the problem and its progression. However, your podiatrist, with a simple, painless tool called a monofilament, determines the existence of the condition by testing your feet for neuropathy.
Foot ulcers could get more complicated having vascular disease, which reduces the body's healing ability and increases the risk of infection in the foot. At the same time, a high level of blood sugar reduces the body's ability to fight infection, making the healing process slower in the foot.
Ulcer Wound Symptoms
Pain is not a common symptom since most patients have reduced or lost the ability to feel pain. Due to this usually, drainage on socks, swelling, odor, and skin redness are the most noticeable symptoms and signs of ulceration.
Pay a Visit to Your Podiatrist
The time to seek immediately seek podiatric medical care is once you notice an ulcer. Patients with diabetes should be treated for ulcers To avoid the risk of infection and probable amputation. This will guarantee healthier feet for the patient as well as lower healthcare costs.
Foot Ulcer Diagnosis Treatment & Care
Rapid healing is the main goal in the treatment of foot ulcers. The faster ulcer is treated and heals, the lesser chance for a foot infection.
Below are some factors in the appropriate diabetic foot ulcer treatment:
- Infection prevention
- Off-loading or pressuring off the area
- Debridement or Removing dead tissues and skin
- Dressing the ulcer wound
- Blood glucose management & monitoring
If the podiatrist's diagnosis shows that the ulcer is infected, an antibiotics treatment plan is required. If the problems persist, wound care and, in some cases, hospitalization will be arranged.
It is essential to know that to avoid ulcer infection:
- Monitor and maintain blood glucose levels
- Always clean the ulcer clean and have it bandaged
- Wound cleansing daily, using a bandage or recommended wound dressing
- Wearing footwear
Off-loading is the method recommended for ulcers on the bottom of the foot. In off-loading Crutches, specialized casting, brace, using a wheelchair, special footwear might be prescribed by your podiatrist. Off-loading reduces the friction, irritation, and pressure on the ulcer area and helps the rapid recovery.
Over the years, wound care techniques and materials have significantly advanced.
The rule of thumb is that ulcer wounds heal faster, with a lower risk of infection. I the patient keeps the wound covered and away from moisture and microscopic particles, the ulcer wound will heal faster. To avoid further complications, the use of hydrogen peroxide, strong betadine, soaking in saltwater, and whirlpools are prohibited.
Using stem cell dressings, normal saline, ulcer dressings, skin substitutes, growth factor dressings, skin substitutes, and topical medications prescribed by your podiatrist would create a good wound care strategy for ulcer care.
Blood circulation is a significant factor in healing a wound. Also, the more blood in the wound area, the faster the healing process is expected.
The most important factor during the treatment of a diabetic foot ulcer is controlling the patient's blood glucose levels.
Surgical Methods: If you have a non-infected foot ulcer, it would likely get treated without the need for any surgery. However, if you have an infected wound or the conventional methods fail, a surgical option may be appropriate. Excision or shaving of bone and the correction of bunions, hammer toes, or bumps to remove pressure on the affected area are among the surgical options.
Recovery time is based on the wound size and its location. The surgery is to reduce the swelling and pressure on the wound when standing and walking. Recovery time ranges from few weeks to few months based on the depth of the operation.
Preventive Ulcer Wound Care
Prevention in development is the best way to avoid and treat a diabetic foot ulcer. Therefore, seeing a podiatrist regular on a regular basis is highly recommended. The podiatrist determines if you are developing a foot ulcer or are a high-risk candidate.
If you have the following, then you are high risk:
- Poor blood circulation
- Having bunion or hammertoe
- Wearing not inappropriate shoes
- High level of blood sugar
- History of foot ulceration
Smoking, drinking alcohol, high cholesterol, and high blood sugar are among the risk factors. In foot ulcer prevention, wearing prescribed shoes and socks will help a great deal in reducing risks. Your podiatrist can help you to choose the best and the most proper shoes.
Looking for early ulcer signs and checking your feet is extremely important to find a potential problem as soon as possible. Examine your feet daily and most notably between the toes for cracks, blisters, ulcers, cuts and bruises, and any sign of abnormality. On every podiatrist visit, remove your socks and shoes so your doctor can examine your feet. If you find a problem or detected an irregularity, report it to your podiatrist as soon as possible. It doesn't matter how unimportant it might seem to you.
The following are the primary standards and requirements recommended by podiatric medical care for fast wound healing.
- Maintain low blood glucose level
- Appropriate wound care
- Prevent and treat any infection
- Off-loading your feet
- Having good blood circulation
Our podiatrist in Irvine, Dr. Sima Soltani, is specializing in operation less treatments. With more than 20 years of experience in treating patients with foot and ankle problems, we are the most reliable podiatry clinic in Irvine California.Learn About Our Practice
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your feet and ankles are amazing! However, tend to underestimate its importance to our everyday life. The number of steps a person takes on a daily basis range from 10,000 to 15,000. It takes a real beating to your feet and ankle which can lead to the inevitable common foot and ankle injury. More than half of Americans seek help for their feet and anklesproblems every year.
If you are having a foot problem, don't consider yourself alone as more than millions of the population seek help for their foot problems every year. If you need to find a foot doctor (podiatrist) and are out of the Irvine, Orange County area, consider making an appointment with our podiatrist in Irvine. Here are some foot problems we treat in our podiatry office
4330 Barranca PKWY, Suite 245, Irvine, CA 92604
949 786 7114
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