You may think a slow-healing wound is a normal part of life. Not necessarily. An open sore may be your body's way of sending a warning signal that something more serious is afoot.
Chronic wounds that are left untreated can put you at risk for infection, hospitalization, even limb loss. You also may experience chronic pain, social isolation, depression and anxiety. That's why it's important to get medical attention before a wound turns into a painful problem.
Nearly 7 million people in the U.S. live with chronic wounds, a 4 percent increase since 2020. The rise in case numbers is partially due to an aging population and higher rates of diseases, such as diabetes, obesity and heart disease.
Your feet and legs deserve attention
Goshen Wound & Hyperbaric Center wants to help you put your best foot – or leg – forward during Wound Care Awareness Month. It's an opportunity to focus on wound prevention and treatment to keep you moving through life.
Anyone with a wound can be at risk that the body won't be able to jumpstart the healing process. Your risk increases if you have a health condition, such as diabetes, heart disease, obesity or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.
Use the 50/30 guideline to check wound healing
Most wounds should heal by 50 percent after 30 days. If you have a blister or sore that is slow to heal, ask your healthcare provider to check on it. That's the best way to get on a path of care that will relieve pain and keep you moving through life.
Here are common types of wounds that can cause serious complications if left untreated.
- Pressure ulcers usually start from a wound over a bony prominence. Tissue loss can lead to exposed muscle, tendon or bone.
- Diabetic ulcers typically occur on the feet, heal or toes. Watch for dry or flaky skin on the legs and feet.
- Venous stasis ulcers cause leg pain or achiness. Wounds may produce moderate to heavy drainage.
- Arterial ulcers can cause leg pain when the leg is elevated. Look for shiny or tight skin that is cool or cold to the touch.
Goshen Wound & Hyperbaric Center offers advanced wound care solutions, including hyperbaric oxygen therapy, compression therapy, edema management and noninvasive vascular assessment. A team of board certified surgeons and podiatrists treat patients with complications from diabetes, vascular disorders and trauma.