Diabetic Foot Infection

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Foot ulcers are one of the major complications of diabetes. It occurs in 15 percent of all patients with diabetes and precedes 84 percent of all lower leg amputations. Dr. Edward Hill tells us more about diabetic foot infection in todays 60 Second Housecall.

Dr. Hill:

A diabetic foot infection is an infection in the skin, muscles or bones of the foot in people who have diabetes.

Over time, high blood sugar levels cause changes to the skin, nerves and blood vessels in the feet. If you have damaged nerves, you may lose feeling in your feet and you wont be able to feel small cuts, scrapes, blisters or even pressure from shoes, which can cause calluses or other problems.

These minor problems can turn into open sores, called ulcers, or serious infections. Damage to blood vessels slows blood flow to the foot and slows wound healing. This increases the risk of getting an infection that may require removal of the infected area or amputation of the foot.

Antibiotics are usually used to treat the infection. If you have an infection that has moved into the deeper layers of the foot, such as the muscle or bone, any dead or infected tissue will need to be removed.

For North Mississippi Medical Center, Im Dr. Edward Hill.