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Ulcer Treatment

Trained Professionals to Help Your Ulcer Heal

Generally speaking, an ulcer is an open sore either inside or on the surface of the body. These wounds require a lot of time and care to heal properly, so it is advised that you have a trained medical professional treat them. Touro offers comprehensive ulcer treatment for patients throughout New Orleans.

Diabetic foot ulcers

A diabetic foot ulcer is an open wound usually occurring on the bottom of the foot. Roughly 15% of persons with diabetes will develop a foot ulcer at some point. Patients with foot ulcers are prone to infection and other complications.

Diabetic foot ulcers may be caused by:

  • A history of diabetes
  • Poor circulation in legs and feet
  • Poorly controlled blood sugar
  • Loss of feeling in the feet

Touro’s Comprehensive Wound Healing Center offers trained healthcare professionals who will know how to properly care for your wound. We will perform a complete wound evaluation and thorough diagnostic testing before creating a treatment plan made just for you. Our team will also educate you on the treatment of your wound and on how to prevent new wounds.

You can help your own healing process by:

  • Following weight bearing instructions
  • Regularly monitoring your blood sugar
  • Maintaining your blood sugar in a normal range
  • Following your diabetic diet
  • Taking medication as ordered.
  • Quitting smoking.
  • Inspecting your feet daily

After your wound heals, your doctor will tell you when you can walk on it again. You will need to obtain special shoes or inserts for your shoes before you start walking. This will prevent pressure areas on your feet.

Ischemic ulcers

An ischemic ulcer is a wound caused by inadequate blood supply to the skin and surrounding tissue. The poor blood flow in the area causes cell death and damages tissues.

Ischemic ulcers may be caused by:

  • A history of high blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • A history of artherosclerosis (clogged/hardened arteries)
  • Smoking
  • Raynaud’s disease

During your first visit to the Wound Healing Center you can expect us to review your medical history and perform a physical exam. We will test for feeling, blood flow, and oxygen supply to the feet and examine the wound. Follow up visits may include a re-examination of your wound, a review of test results, and operations to remove dead tissue.

Neuropathic ulcers

Neuropathic foot ulcers are wounds that are caused by prolonged pressure or trauma to a foot that has little or no sensation.

The neuropathic foot may result in development of the following conditions:

  • Dryness and cracking
  • Pulling up of the toes
  • Flattening of the arch
  • Loss of feeling in the foot
  • Turning inward of the foot

Neuropathic foot ulcers often occur in patients with diabetes, high blood pressure, artherosclerosis, and/or Raynaud’s disease.

Patients with a neuropathic ulcer should care for their skin by washing with soap and water, applying moisturizers, and using an electric razor to shave legs.

Call the Wound Healing Center if you experience any of the following:

  • Increased pain at the wound site
  • New redness, blisters, or sores on either foot
  • Redness or swelling around the wound or spreading away from the wound
  • A foul odor coming from the wound
  • Any changes in color or amount of drainage from the wound

Pressure ulcers

Pressure ulcers are wounds that develop when there is prolonged pressure between the skin and a bone. Prolonged pressure may lead to redness that does not fade, blisters, additional wounds, and yellow or black hardened areas

Causes of pressure ulcers include:

  • Lack of mobility
  • Poor nutrition
  • Moving improperly
  • Lack of bowel or bladder control
  • Loss of sensation

Venous stasis ulcers

Venous stasis disease is caused by damaged veins in the legs that allow fluid to pool in the lower leg. This causes the leg to swell and the skin to stretch like an oversized balloon. The skin breaks open and a wound – the ulcer – forms. Changes in skin color and texture may result.

Veins can be damaged by:

  • Injury to the veins from trauma, blood clots, or broken bones
  • Inherited weakness in the veins
  • Obesity, pregnancy, or prolonged standing

You can help prevent ulcers by keeping skin clean and moisturized and by wearing stockings all day. It is also important to protect your legs from severe injuries and from excessive exposure to the sun or hot water.

If you have already developed a venous stasis ulcer, you can help it heal by:

  • Exercising as directed
  • Elevating your legs higher than your heart several times a day for 20 minute intervals or using your compression device as instructed.
  • Wearing support stockings all day, every day
  • Eating a well-balanced diet.
  • Maintaining a healthy weight
  • Avoiding prolonged standing and sitting
  • Keeping your compression wrap on