All About Wounds

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A small nick or scratch on your foot is typically no big deal. A nice clean bandage and some antibiotic ointment can help it clear up and heal quickly. However, there are some foot or ankle wounds that might need additional medical attention.

Luckily, our podiatrist, Dr. David R. Sullivan, is a Certified Wound Specialist, a Fellow of the American College of Certified Wound Specialists, and a member of the Association for the Advancement of Wound Care. He has a lot of knowledge and expertise on healing wounds, so we decided to share some!

Types of wounds

Wounds can be caused by traumas or accidents, from surgery, or can be associated with a disease or condition, like neuropathy or diabetes. Wounds are categorized as either acute or chronic.

  • Acute wounds occur due to a specific circumstance like a trauma and typically heal quickly. They generally heal without medical intervention.
  • Chronic wounds are wounds that persist for longer periods (usually a month or longer) and do not show signs of healing. Chronic wounds are often associated with diseases like diabetes, neuropathy, liver disease, kidney disease, and some cancers. Conditions and diseases that affect the immune system or circulatory system can put a person at greater risk for chronic wounds. Chronic wounds could also be caused by frostbite, burns, bedsores, or chemical exposure. Often, chronic wounds develop and progress because they are not able to be detected right away, due to reduced feeling in the area. Chronic wounds require regular careful monitoring and typically need medical intervention – especially if you have one of the above-mentioned diseases.

What to look for

Whether the wound is chronic or acute, it is susceptible to infection. Infection signs include: increased pain, redness or discoloration surrounding the wound site, heat around the wound, swelling in the area, increased or a sudden change in drainage, odor, fever, nausea, or vomiting. If you notice any of these symptoms, give us a call at 317-896-6655.

Prevention is key

If you have diabetes or any other disease that affects your nerves or your immune system, it’s important to be vigilant about preventing wounds. Proper fitting shoes help to prevent blisters. Our office has resources for great shoes for diabetic patients. Daily foot checks and cleanses should also be part of your prevention routine. This past blog has great tips on diabetic foot care.

If you have sustained a wound on your foot or ankle and it does not seem to be healing on its own, please give us a call. Dr. David R. Sullivan here at Westfield Foot and Ankle, LLC, is highly trained and able to answer any questions about wounds. To schedule an appointment, contact us today. You can call our conveniently located Westfield, IN office at 317-896-6655.