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Why Diabetes Make Wounds Heal Slower

Monday, 19 October 2020 00:00

Did you know that approximately 30 million people in the United States live with diabetes? One frequent side effect of this condition is the development of wounds on the feet, known as diabetic foot wounds (DFUs). DFUs are slow to heal, do not heal well, and sometimes don’t heal at all. This increases the risk of getting an infection, which can come with a host of serious complications. But what is it about diabetes that makes DFUs heal so poorly? When blood glucose levels are permanently high, as they often are in people with diabetes, the function of white blood cells is impaired. Without the white blood cells working correctly, the body has more trouble closing wounds. Poor circulation, a frequent complication of diabetes, makes blood move more slowly. The blood becomes unable to supply nutrients to the wound efficiently, leading to poorer healing and a loss of feeling in the feet. Because of this, a person might get a cut or sore on their foot and not even be aware of it, delaying treatment and increasing infection risk. If you have diabetes, it is suggested that you see a podiatrist for the appropriate foot care to prevent and treat DFUs.

Wound care is an important part in dealing with diabetes. If you have diabetes and a foot wound or would like more information about wound care for diabetics, consult with one of our podiatrists from New Tampa Foot & Ankle. Our doctors will assess your condition and provide you with quality foot and ankle treatment.

What Is Wound Care?

Wound care is the practice of taking proper care of a wound. This can range from the smallest to the largest of wounds. While everyone can benefit from proper wound care, it is much more important for diabetics. Diabetics often suffer from poor blood circulation which causes wounds to heal much slower than they would in a non-diabetic. 

What Is the Importance of Wound Care?

While it may not seem apparent with small ulcers on the foot, for diabetics, any size ulcer can become infected. Diabetics often also suffer from neuropathy, or nerve loss. This means they might not even feel when they have an ulcer on their foot. If the wound becomes severely infected, amputation may be necessary. Therefore, it is of the upmost importance to properly care for any and all foot wounds.

How to Care for Wounds

The best way to care for foot wounds is to prevent them. For diabetics, this means daily inspections of the feet for any signs of abnormalities or ulcers. It is also recommended to see a podiatrist several times a year for a foot inspection. If you do have an ulcer, run the wound under water to clear dirt from the wound; then apply antibiotic ointment to the wound and cover with a bandage. Bandages should be changed daily and keeping pressure off the wound is smart. It is advised to see a podiatrist, who can keep an eye on it.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Wesley Chapel and Tampa, FL . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

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