SRMC Wound Healing Center highlights need for proper foot care

SALEM–In recognition of National Foot Health Awareness Month in April, Salem Regional Medical Center’s (SRMC) Wound Healing Center is highlighting the importance of proper foot care, especially for people with diabetes.

“Those with diabetes are at an increased risk of developing different types of foot problems,” explained Dawn Thomas, RN, BSN, Program Director of SRMC’s Wound Healing Center. “Because people with diabetes often have nerve damage that can cause loss of feeling in their feet, sores or other injuries may go unnoticed until serious ulcers develop. Poor blood flow and changes in the shape of the feet or toes can also raise the risk of foot problems in people with diabetes. Among all diabetics, an estimated 25 percent will experience a foot ulcer at some time in their lives, which can lead to infections, non-healing wounds or even possible removal of the affected limb without the proper treatment.”

According to Thomas, practicing daily foot care is one of the best ways people with diabetes can prevent a diabetic foot ulcer. Tips for regular diabetes foot care include:

¯ Checking feet daily for any red spots, cuts, swelling, blisters, sores or other injuries

¯ Washing feet every day and drying them with care, especially between the toes

¯ Wearing properly fitted shoes that do not rub or pinch feet

¯ Always wearing socks or stockings with shoes and never going barefoot

¯ Asking the doctor to check feet at every office visit

“Physical activity may also help to increase circulation in the feet, which can reduce the risk of developing complications and promote healing. Patients should always check with their health care team before starting a new exercise program,” Thomas advised.

Advanced Wound Healing

The specially-trained physicians and clinical staff at SRMC’s Wound Healing Center are highly experienced in treating and healing acute, chronic or non-healing wounds, including those associated with conditions like diabetes.

“The Wound Healing Center offers advanced treatment procedures, including hyperbaric oxygen therapy, to help our patients heal and return to their normal activities,” Thomas added. “Last year, over 95 percent of patients who came to us with wounds that had not healed in 30 days were discharged from our care fully healed.”

For information about the special care provided at SRMC’s Wound Healing Center call 330-332-7415 or visit www.salemregional.com.

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