Our wound care program is important to those who suffer from ulcers on their feet. Here at Jan David Tepper, DPM Inc., we acknowledge and act fast at the first onset of wound(s) for diabetic and non-diabetic patients in order to promote limb salvage. Through our comprehensive wound care program there are various treatment options that can help you.
Diabetic and Non-Diabetic Wound Care Signs and Symptoms
When used in the context of diabetes, “wound” can pertain to issues like blisters, bruises, bumps, burns, calluses, cuts, and even ingrown toenails. Essentially, any possible abnormality, condition, or injury is a cause for concern and should be evaluated and treated at our Upland, CA office.
There is a wide array of symptoms that can be indicative of their presence which may include:
- Chills and/or fever, which is usually an indication of an infection
- Chronic pain (please be mindful of the fact that complete painlessness with diabetes is also concerning)
- Dulling of sensations or even numbness in the lower limbs
- Signs of infection – discharge, drainage, foul odor, and dead tissue (gangrene)
- Signs of inflammation – heat, pain, redness, swelling, and loss of function
Individuals who are otherwise healthy can also develop wounds (and should provide proper treatment for them as well), but several issues that accompany diabetes can increase the risk posed by a wound. These include:
- Blood sugar levels – Elevated glucose levels cause blood vessels to narrow, which then reduces the body’s ability to provide appropriate quantities of blood to affected areas.
- Diabetic neuropathy – The inability to feel pain at the time of injury leaves you unable to provide proper care (which then increases your risk of infection).
- Immune system deficiency – Diabetes makes the immune system as a whole less effective. This can be attributed to certain hormones and enzymes produced in response to elevated blood sugar levels.
- Reduced blood flow – Both the white and red cells that fight infection and provide nutrients, respectively, are carried in your bloodstream.
Treating and Preventing Diabetic Wounds
Seeking medical treatment for your wound is best performed at the earliest possible opportunity. This means to come in and see us as soon as you notice any changes from normal skin appearance in your daily foot inspection. We take care of wounds by:
- Making sure the wound is clean and dressed
- Providing total contact dast(s) for offloading
- Performing circulation study test
- Healing and closing the wound with advance skin graft(s)
- Removing infected or dead tissues so health tissue can safely grow
- Implementing our diabetic shoe program
The primary steps we take in controlling the wound(s) as a successful part of our wound care program:
- Blood sugar control
- Circulation (this is part of our circulation study test)
- Control the infection, if there is one
- Decrease pressure on the wound(s)
The best place for you to start preventing diabetic wounds is with a carefully-prepared diabetic foot care plan. If you don’t already have one, now is the time to change that!
If you live with diabetes and/or see anything unusual or abnormal should be considered as a source of concern and carefully monitored for potential skin breakdown. If you have any of the above symptoms or concerns about your feet contact our office and we can help you!
Contact Jan David Tepper, DPM Inc. at (909) 920-0884 for more information, or to be set up with an appointment with our Upland, CA podiatrist office.