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Jim Maxka, DPM

Hanover (717) 524-1034


 

Foot Wounds and Diabetic Ulcers May Lead To Amputation

Wednesday, 14 September 2022 00:00

The amount of lower limb amputations is at an increased rate, and this is especially true of diabetic patients. High blood levels and poor glucose management can significantly contribute to the onset of diabetes which can lead to the amputation of a toe or a leg. An unnoticed cut on the bottom of the foot may lead to an infection that grows into a diabetic foot ulcer. This can be from the inability to heal properly, in addition to not keeping the weight off of the foot. There are methods that can be implemented which can help to eliminate the need for amputation. These can include controlling the body’s sugar levels, and having regular foot assessments performed by a podiatrist. Research has indicated this may help to reduce the risk of developing a foot ulcer by approximately 50%, which can lead to possible prevention of amputation. If you have diabetes, it is strongly suggested that you are under the care of a podiatrist, who can help you to properly manage this condition, and guide you toward methods in controlling your blood sugar.

Diabetic Limb Salvage

Diabetic limb salvage can be an effective way in preventing the need for limb amputation. If you have a foot ulcer and diabetes, consult with Dr. Jim Maxka from South Penn Foot & Ankle Associates. Our doctor will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

What Is Diabetic Limb Salvage?

Diabetic limb salvage is the attempt of saving a limb, such as the foot, that has an infected ulcer, from amputation. Podiatrists also try to make sure that there is enough function in the foot after the salvage that it is still usable. Those with diabetes experience poor blood circulation, which prevents proper healing of an ulcer. If the ulcer is left uncheck, it could become infected, which could result in the need for amputation.

Diabetes is the number one cause of non-traumatic amputations in the United States. Amputation has been found to lead to higher mortality rates. This translates into higher healthcare costs, and a reduced quality of life and mobility for amputees. Podiatrists have attempted to increase the prevalence of limb salvage in an attempt to solve these issues.

Diagnosis and Treatment

Limb salvage teams have grown in recent years that utilize a number of different treatments to save the infected limb. This includes podiatrists that specialize in wound care, rehabilitation, orthotics, and surgery. Through a combination of these methods, limb salvage has been found to be an effective treatment for infected limbs, and as an alternative to amputation. Podiatrists will first evaluate the potential for limb salvage and determine if the limb can be saved or must be amputated. 

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact our office located in Hanover, PA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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