Every year, almost 100,000 Americans must undergo a procedure to amputate all or part of one or both feet or legs—not because of a traumatic accident, but because an infected wound got out of control and could no longer be contained.
The vast majority of these cases began with a diabetes diagnosis, and a small sore that simply didn’t heal. In fact, without treatment, even something as minor as a burst blister or skin breakdown due to pressure can become a serious wound.
If you notice a sore on your foot that isn’t healing, time is of the essence. Contact our office for immediate treatment. The sooner we can close and heal the wound, the less likely you are to suffer a serious infection or amputation.
What Causes Foot Ulcers?
People with diabetes are at high risk of developing foot ulcers. There are two main reasons for this:
- Nerve damage. High blood sugar damages nerves in your feet and toes. This may reduce your sensitivity to touch and pain, or even leave you completely numb. As a result, you may not notice a wound developing unless you are checking your feet every day.
- Poor circulation. Diabetes is also highly correlated with circulatory problems, which means your feet may not be getting enough oxygen or nutrients to regenerate injured tissues, or enough white blood cells to fight off infections efficiently.
Of course, neuropathy and poor circulation on their own (without a diabetes diagnosis) will also increase your risk of wounds, as will various other medical conditions, or being a smoker.
If you have a structural problem with your feet, such as a bunion or flat arches, you’re also more likely to develop an ulcer, as such deformities can increase the pressure, shock, and shear forces on your feet.
Our Wound Care Services
If you have diabetes or are otherwise at high risk of developing a foot ulcer, you should be checking your feet every day for signs of wounds or injuries.
If you notice anything, call us immediately. You don’t want to risk losing a foot—or a whole lot more—because you waited too long.
At Silicon Valley Podiatry Group, we are proud to be able to provide comprehensive in-office wound care services from our own on-site wound care center. This affords several benefits to our patients:
- Streamlined service. There’s no need to drive out to the wound care center after your checkup or make another appointment. Your initial checkup, wound care, and ongoing wound management will be provided by the same medical team from the same location.
- Substantial cost savings. There are no unnecessary or expensive hospital fees to pass on to you, since we can handle it all in-house. You get equivalent or superior treatment for a fraction of the cost.
Advanced Treatment Procedures
The goal of wound care treatment is to bring about healing as rapidly as possible, protecting the wound site, and preventing (or reversing) any infection. This includes several important components:
- Cleaning (debriding) the wound of dead skin and foreign debris, which impair the healing process.
- Applying any necessary medications, wound coverings, and dressings to the wound to protect it.
- Helping you offload weight and pressure from the wound—for example using casting, crutches, orthotics, diabetic shoes, etc.
- Teaching you how to monitor, care for, and protect your wound at home.
- Setting up follow-up appointments so that we can evaluate the healing process and re-dress the wound as necessary.
At SVPG, we use advanced procedures in our wound healing protocols in order to help you heal as quickly as possible and give you the best chance at a positive outcome.
This includes using strong, flexible wound covers made from preserved amniotic tissue, which is rich in growth factor proteins, collagen, and stem cells.
This stem cell treatment has a number of significant advantages for our patients:
- It comfortably and naturally adheres to your skin, forming an effective environmental barrier and lowering your infection risk.
- It helps accelerate the healing process and reduces inflammation. In one study, total wound closure was achieved in about half the number of treatments and 40% less time when compared to traditional, non-adhering dressings.
- It reduces the appearance of visible scarring after the healing process.
We also provide comprehensive diabetic foot care services for our patients, including annual check-ups, screenings, custom orthotics, and diabetic shoes.
Because we understand how serious diabetic wounds can be, we do our best to see patients as quickly as possible. If you need our assistance, please call our San Jose office today at (408) 358-2666.