Diabetes and Wounds: What You Should Know
If you have Type 2 diabetes, it’s important to learn abut an important but rarely discussed complication of the disease: foot ulcers. Foot ulcers are one of the most common complications in people with diabetes. A diabetic foot ulcer is a wound or open sore on the foot, heel or toe. Ulcers can form as a result of poor circulation, nerve damage and skin irritation.
Diabetic foot ulcers are often painless, so it’s important to be aware of the symptoms. Often, there is little to no feeling in the feet or the ulcer itself, and the skin is normal or warm to the touch. The skin on the legs and feet may be dry and flaky.
Diabetic foot ulcers can be difficult to heal. More than half will become infected and, in some cases, may require amputation. For that reason, prevention and treatment of all diabetic foot ulcers is very important.
Common ways to prevent and treat diabetic foot ulcers include:
• Maintaining good blood sugar control
• Inspecting your feet daily
• Avoiding over-the-counter products to treat your feet
• Avoiding cutting ulcers or callouses yourself
• Dressing your ulcer as prescribed by your physician
• Wearing shoes that protect your ulcer and don’t cause rubbing or pressure
Wound Care Specialist Brian Schmidt, MD, FACS, sees patients at Carolinas Wound Care and Hyperbaric Center. “I tell patients to inspect their feet each day and seek medical attention if a lower extremity wound has increased pain, redness or swelling, foul odor or other significant changes.”
Carolinas Wound Care and Hyperbaric Center offers the latest, most effective wound care treatments, including advanced oxygen therapies. With the right information and the highest-quality care, you can keep your feet healthy.
Diabetes care close to home
Dr. Schmidt cares for diabetic foot ulcers at Carolinas HealthCare System’s Carolinas Wound Care and Hyperbaric Center. For more information, visit CarolinasHealthCare.org/wound-care or call 704-403-1275 to schedule an appointment.
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