April is National Foot Health Awareness Month and a time when the experts at HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital Highland ’s Wound Care Center suggests people take a moment to stand up for their feet. Right now, 6.7 million Americans are living with a chronic wound, and more than two million of those are suffering from a diabetic foot ulcer.
HSHS St. Joseph’s Wound Care Center treats chronic foot and leg wounds that are often caused by underlying conditions such as diabetes and vascular disease. Are your feet at risk? Some of the primary risk factors for wounds of the feet include: neuropathy, deformity of the foot, history of foot ulceration, absent or diminished pulses, and prior amputation.
“The statistics are truly startling when you realize that about 60 percent of non-traumatic limb amputations are performed on people living with diabetes,” said D. Scott Covington, MD, FACS, CHWS, Executive Vice President, Provider Education and Engagement with Healogics, Inc. Healogics manages the specializing in the treatment of chronic wounds and non-responsive conditions.
There are preventative measures everyone can do to improve foot health. HSHS St. Joseph’s Wound Care Center offers the following foot care tips:
Check your feet for red spots, cuts, swelling, blisters, sores or other injuries daily.
Wash your feet every day and dry them with care, especially between the toes.
Trim your toenails as needed after you’ve washed and dried your feet.
Wear properly fitting shoes that do not rub or pinch your feet.
Always wear socks or stockings with your shoes, and never walk barefoot or while wearing just socks.
Physical activity can help increase circulation in your feet. Consult your health care team to see which physical activity is right for you.
Take off your socks at your next check-up, and alert your doctor to any problems with your feet. HSHS St. Joseph’s Wound Care Center offers comprehensive wound care and leading-edge treatments including hyperbaric oxygen therapy, negative pressure wound therapy, bio-engineered skin substitutes, biological and biosynthetic dressings and growth factor therapies.
For more information on the treatment of diabetic foot ulcers or chronic or infected wounds, contact HSHS St. Joseph’s Wound Care Center by calling (618) 651-2502. More information can also be found on the hospital’s web site at http://www.stjosephshighland.org/Medical-Services/Wound-Healing-Center.
HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital Highland is part of the Southern Illinois Division of Hospital Sisters Health System, which also includes HSHS St. Elizabeth’s Hospital in O’Fallon, HSHS St. Anthony’s Memorial Hospital in Effingham, HSHS St. Joseph’s Hospital in Breese, and HSHS Holy Family Hospital in Greenville.