Avoiding Amputation: What to Expect from Wound Care

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There are a few medical discussions that are sensitive. Weight issues is one. Mental illness is another. One sticky conversation that no one likes having—but everyone needs to discuss more—is about diabetic amputations. Amputation is the most extreme treatment for dealing with a diabetic ulcer, but when the situation has deteriorated to a choice between the loss of a limb and the loss of a life, the foot goes. However, it doesn’t have to get that far. Wound care treats and heals an ulcer so you don’t have to face an amputation.

As soon as you have an ulcer, you need to begin wound healing. This means getting help from experienced professionals like our team at Podiatry Associates, P.C. right away. Then you’ll need to stop putting weight and pressure on the affected foot. Diabetic wounds develop when you continue walking on and aggravating a small break in your skin. Removing the weight from the sore reduces the damaging pressure.

Feet with Diabetes

The other treatment that needs to happen immediately is cleaning. Our specialists will help you do this safely so that the tissue is cleaned well and treated for infections. Sometimes this involves a process called debridement as well, which involves cutting out any dead or festering tissue so your feet can recover. As soon as the ulcer is cleared, it will be treated with medication and carefully bandaged.

You’ll have to spend a fair amount of time in a special boot to protect the foot, and you won’t be able to walk on it. The dressing will have to be changed periodically to apply more antibiotics and check on your progress. All of this is to limit factors that could make the problem worse while encouraging wound healing. Once the wound has truly recovered, you’ll slowly begin using the foot again. You’ll need to start wearing special shoes or orthotics to help prevent the problem in the future.

Wound care is an important part of taking care of diabetic feet—and thus a vital part of avoiding amputations—so it needs to be talked about. You don’t have to resign yourself to losing a toe or more if you develop an ulcer. Taking care of the sore properly can heal it! Let our team at Podiatry Associates, P.C. help you keep both your limbs healthy. Call (303) 805-5156 to make appointments at our Castle Pines or Parker, CO, offices as soon as you notice any trouble with diabetic feet. 

Photo Credit: Hans VIA pixabay.com

Dr. Cynthia Oberholtzer-Classen, DPM
Founder and Owner of Podiatry Associates, PC
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