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Surgery For Diabetic Foot - What All Should You Know

Written and reviewed by
MBBS, MS - General Surgery, Laparoscopic, Burns & Plastic
General Surgeon, Delhi  •  31 years experience
Surgery For Diabetic Foot - What All Should You Know

Surgery is an art and surgeons are artists. It is a grueling process and requires extreme dexterity and quite a bit of courage. It is a process where specialized tools are used to remove unwanted tissues, infections or treat an injury or to reshape the human body.

A surgeon is a person who executes the process of surgery. A surgery team is made for these operations which is highly delicate and life risking task. Surgeon’s have their own assistants who assits or helps with the surgical equipments as instructed by the surgeon.

Foot infections are a very common problem in diabetic people. A very miniscule cut can turn into an untreatable infection and can claim a person’s life. A diabetic person loses the ability to repair and thus  the body is unable to repair itself. Prompt medical actions must be taken to treat the affected person and it is an extremely delicate procedure.

TYPES OF SURGERIESBASED ON TIME

  1. BASED ON PURPOSE
  2. TYPE OF PROCEDURE
  3. BY BODY PART
  4. BY EQUIPMENTS USED

Prevention

There are certain prevention methods of diabetic foot like regulating glucose levels, identification of the problem, proper self-care and self-examination. Doing routine examination of the foot is a necessary step and one should apprise one’s doctor of any development of any kind of infections. Wearing proper footwear is another essential.

Wearing improper footwear that cause repeated trauma to the foot may cause infections. The aim of a foot surgery is to control the infection without losing the limb. The skilled and able surgeons do this by removing the pus, removing every affected tissue and by making a healthy wound bed. In the whole process one should keep in mind the functionality of the affected foot. Untreated infections may create pressure points and trigger the infection again.

Classifications of foot infections

  1. A depth of the infection
  2. The severity of the infection
  3. The amount of tissue involved
  4. The anatomic site affected
  5. The causative factors

The treatment of the infections includes detection of the infection and it is considered an infection if the following symptoms are present

Symptoms

Infections may give rise to recalcitrant hyperglycemia and malaise, but systemic inflammatory manifestations may be absent. Patients with a serious conditions, may have an elevated erythrocyte-sedimentation rate or C-reactive protein level. With deep infections bone involvement is a concern. One study suggested that in the presence of an infection, a high specificity and positive predictive value for osteitis when the bone is felt with a sterile metal probe.

Clinical, radiological, and/or scintigraphic signs compatible with osteitis may lead to suspicion, but MRI is the imaging procedure of choice for classifying osteomyelitis from other conditions, like neuroarthropathy. A  study showed that on MRI of the infected foot, the nonenhanced areas represent infected tissue. Lack of enhancement in these areas can mask the presence of abscesses and osteomyelitis. This type of healing process requires time and patience and utmost self care.

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