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diabetic foot ulcer

Diabetes can damage the nerve endings and blood vessels in your feet and severely impair your sense of feeling.  Meaning you are much less likely to notice when your feet have an injury. Typical skin problem on the feet like a callus, blister, or cracked skin can turn into a larger sore, called a diabetic foot ulcer. DFU mostly form on the forefoot but can form anywhere on the foot or ankle if there is a deformity present. You can also develop an ulcer at any boney prominences, such as at the top of the toe if there is a hammer toe.

DFUs can easily become infected as they are open wounds. Severe infections can lead to gangrene with amputation typically being necessary. The level of amputation, i.e. toes, foot or leg, varies depending on amount of infection, blood flow, and dead tissue.

DFUs are managed on a weekly basis to evaluate change or serial wound debridement. Wound debridement is necessary to continue to remove dead tissue to allow healthy tissue to grow in. While having a DFU, your foot wound should always be wrapped in a protective bandage. It is very important to keep your weight off your injured foot. After a foot ulcer has formed, it will not heal as long as you keep putting weight on the area.

Always get early treatment for foot problems. A minor irritation can lead to a major problem if it's not taken care of soon.

Follow-up care is a key part of your treatment and safety. Be sure to make and go to all appointments.



To prevent foot ulcers

See Diabetic foot care.


Call your doctor now or seek immediate medical care if:


  • You have symptoms of infection

    • Increased pain, swelling, warmth, or redness, Red streaks leading from the area.

    • Pus draining from the area.

    • A fever.

Watch closely for changes in your health, and be sure to contact your doctor if you have a new problem with your feet, such as:

  • A new sore or ulcer.

  • A break in the skin that is not healing after several days.

  • Bleeding corns or calluses.

  • An ingrown toenail.

  • You do not get better as expected.

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