Diabetic foot ulcers are a common complication of diabetes and can be difficult to treat. It is not recommended that patients treat diabetic foot ulcers themselves. You may apply proper wound care as a first aid treatment, but always let a foot and ankle doctor or podiatrist assess and treat your diabetic foot ulcer. A podiatrist can give you detailed instructions on how to properly respond to a diabetic foot ulcer, so you don’t suffer from serious complications in the future.
There is a risk of diabetic foot ulcers leading to limb loss, and a foot and ankle doctor can help you avoid that. The good news is, with proper care and treatment, most diabetic foot ulcers can heal completely.
Below, we will talk about how podiatrists treat diabetic foot ulcers.
At-Home Diabetic Foot Ulcer Care
The first step in treating a diabetic foot ulcer is making an appointment to see a podiatrist as soon as possible. Trying to handle the situation at home yourself is not recommended under any circumstances. It is simply not worth the risks of advanced diabetic foot. Therefore, make an appointment immediately.
In the meantime, there’s things you can do to care for the foot ulcer at home. To start, keep the area clean by washing it with mild soap and water every day, applying antibiotic ointment or cream as needed, and changing the dressing regularly.
Next, you should change your footwear to avoid disturbing the healing of the diabetic wound. Off-loading is reducing pressure on the affected area, and there are special diabetic healing shoes that are open, non-weight bearing, and protect ulcers for this purpose. Try to avoid activities that put extra stress on your feet.
It’s also important to maintain a healthy diet that keeps your blood sugar levels under control to help your diabetic wound heal faster.
Foot Ulcer Care By A Podiatrist
When you go in for your appointment, the podiatrist will thoroughly check the wound and ask for a timeline of events leading up to the development and worsening of the wound. The doctor may recommend special dressings or wraps for added protection from infection or further injury.They may also prescribe antibiotics to treat the infected diabetic wound. This could include topical creams or ointments applied directly to the wound site or oral medication.
In severe cases, where the infection has spread, a foot and ankle surgeon may perform limb salvage, which involves the removal of dead tissue and implanting grafts to allow healthy new tissue to grow. This helps improve healing, thereby preserving the limb.
Diabetic foot ulcers can easily progress to an emergency. If you have been diagnosed with diabetes, it is important to choose a foot and ankle surgeon for diabetic foot management. A simple foot issue can escalate quickly, which is why you should take foot wounds, scrapes, scratches, and ulcers very seriously.
Podiatrist for Diabetic Foot Ulcer Treatment in Warwick and Middletown, Rhode Island, and Fall River, Massachusetts
The board-certified podiatrists at the Foot & Ankle Institute of New England are highly trained and experienced in diabetic foot and ankle medicine and surgery. We regularly treat patients with a diabetic foot and ensure they have all the tools necessary to be able to preserve their limbs.
Our doctors provide the full spectrum of diabetic foot management, from routine foot checks to emergency procedures, such as limb salvage surgery. To schedule an appointment with one of our podiatrists, call our podiatry office nearest you or use our convenient online request form.