Healogics is raising awareness of diabetes-related wounds as part of the Healogics ninth annual Diabetes Awareness Campaign. Throughout November, Wound Care Centers will educate the local community about the importance of awareness, early intervention, and specialized care for diabetes-related chronic wounds, like diabetic foot ulcers. Local team members will also visit healthcare providers in surrounding areas to provide important information to help at-risk patients living with diabetes.
“This campaign is essential because early detection of diabetes-related wounds significantly reduces amputation risks. Diabetic foot ulcers are the leading cause of diabetes-related hospitalizations and lower-limb amputations. What starts as a small cut or blister can quickly progress into a non-healing wound with severe complications. With 50 percent of our patient population living with diabetes, we know firsthand that our awareness efforts can help improve the lives of those struggling with diabetes-related wounds,” said Healogics Chief Executive Officer Frank Williams.
Many suffering from chronic wounds have been negatively affected by the COVID-19 pandemic as they have eschewed needed care during the past two-plus years. Untreated and undertreated wounds have resulted in amputation, according to a study from the ADA. Of the patients who have undergone one amputation, 55 percent will require amputation on the second leg. An amputation results in decreased quality of life, increased medical costs and a significantly higher risk of mortality.
“Many people who come to the Wound Care Center with chronic wounds are among the 37 million adults living with diabetes. Some were unaware that diabetes put them at greater risk for non-healing wounds. Encourage patients to check their feet every day. It’s imperative we help patients avoid the serious consequences of non-healing wounds, such as diabetic foot ulcers, by raising awareness of the risks and importance of daily foot screenings to help prevent an avoidable amputation,” said Healogics Chief Medical Officer Dr. William Ennis.
Factors that may increase the risks of developing a chronic wound, such as a diabetic foot ulcer, include high blood sugar levels, poor circulation, immune system issues and nerve damage. Risk factors for diabetes include age, diet, activity level, obesity and heredity.
Healogics recommends the following to help prevent diabetic foot ulcers:
- Stop smoking immediately
- Request comprehensive foot examinations each time you visit your healthcare provider (at least four times a year)
- Examine your feet every day or have a family member inspect them
- Take good care of your feet and clean your toenails
- See your healthcare provider to care for corns and calluses
- Choose supportive, proper footwear (shoes and socks)
- Take steps to improve circulation such as eating healthier and exercising regularly
Early detection and specialized care from a Wound Care Center can reduce healing times and significantly reduce the risk of amputation, Healogics suggests.
[Source(s): Healogics LLC, PR Newswire]