Team of Specialist Doctors Hope to Lower Amputation Rate

Pictured (L-R): Dr Giridhar Tarigopula, consultant diabetologist, Dr Paul Peter, lead consultant for diabetes, patient Paul Surman, Diabetes UK regional manager, Linda Wood, and Linda Hicks clinical specialist podiatrist.Over the past three years, a hospital in County Durham and Darlington, UK, performed 171 amputations. This rate happens to be significantly higher than England’s national average.

In order to combat this high amputation rate, the hospital has set up a team of diabetic foot specialists. When it comes to diabetic patients as well as other patients with systemic diseases, amputation is often a result of untreated symptoms such as ulcers or gangrene.

Dr. Paul Peter, the lead consultant for the project, stated that “We know that 80 per cent of all amputations are preventable - they’re preceded by a foot ulcer which, if seen early enough, can be treated.” The physicians also are working to set up clinics that meet on a weekly and monthly basis. This helps to identify patients with serious conditions as well as educating others on how to take proper care for their health.

When left untreated systemic diseases of the feet can potentially lead to amputation. If you need help caring for your feet, seek out podiatrist Dr. Bruce G. Greenfield DPM of Greenfield Podiatry. Dr. Greenfield can work with you and your condition to keep your feet healthy.

Systemic Diseases of the Foot

Systemic diseases affect the whole body, and symptoms usually are displayed in the feet. This condition can make a patient’s ability to walk unbearable. Systemic diseases include: gout, diabetes mellitus, neurological disorders, and arthritis.

Gout – is caused by an excess of uric acid in the body. Some common symptoms include pain, inflammation, and redness at the metatarsal/phalangeal joint of the base big toe. Gout can be treated by NSAIDs, which relieves pain and inflammation and other drugs which lowers the acid levels in the body.

Diabetes mellitus- is an increase in the level of blood sugar in which the body cannot counteract with the insulin in the body. When the body doesn’t produce enough insulin this is a factor in Diabetes.

Diabetes of the Feet
• Diabetic Neuropathy – may lead to damaged nerves and affect the feet through numbness and loss of sensation.
• Peripheral Vascular Disease- can restrict the blood flow to the feet, and often times lead to amputation of the feet. 

To learn more about Systemic Diseases of the Foot, read the following article.

If you have any questions, please contact one of our offices in Havertown, PA. We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot care needs.

Read more about Systemic Diseases of the Foot.

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