How Does Diabetes Affect Wound Healing?
Healogics is committed to diabetes awareness because of the negative impact diabetes has on wound healing. It’s important to know how diabetes affects the heart and blood vessels in order to understand why people living with diabetes need specialized care for non-healing wounds.
Diabetes disrupts the way our bodies turn food into energy, causing sugar to build up in the bloodstream which damages blood vessels and causes poor circulation. Wounds cannot heal without good circulation because oxygen-rich blood cannot reach the wound.
Types of Diabetes
Currently, 34.2 million Americans have diabetes and this number is expected to nearly double by 2030. People living with Type 1 diabetes do not make insulin at all and were likely diagnosed at a young age. Type 2 diabetes occurs when blood sugar levels stay elevated for a prolonged period of time, disrupting your body’s ability to make the right amounts of insulin or use it properly. Risk factors for Type 2 diabetes include diet, activity level, obesity and heredity.
Diabetic Wound Facts
- Right now, over 2 million people in the U.S. have diabetic foot ulcers
- Up to 25% of all adults living with diabetes will experience a foot ulcer at some point
- Non-healing diabetic foot ulcers account for 85% of diabetes-related amputations
- 50% of people who have experienced an amputation die within five years of the amputation
These facts are devasting and show the importance of wound prevention and expert wound care if a wound develops.
What Causes Diabetic Foot Ulcers?
High blood sugar levels, poor circulation, immune system issues, nerve damage and infection are all factors that contribute to diabetic foot ulcers. Some people are unaware as the wound begins to form. They cannot feel it due to diabetes-related nerve damage in their toes and feet.
How Should You Treat Diabetic Foot Ulcers?
The American Diabetic Association recommends specialist-level foot care for diabetics who smoke or who have histories of prior wounds, loss of feeling, or peripheral arterial disease. The same 2020 ADA report recommends referral to specialized wound care centers for patients with wounds that are chronic, previously treated, antibiotic-resistant or severely infected.1
Healogics helps patients with diabetic foot ulcers and other chronic wounds heal faster. Our highly specialized care includes therapies that aid wound closure, new tissue growth and wound tissue regeneration. These therapies include total contact casting (TCC), negative pressure wound therapy and hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT).
Over the past 20 years, Healogics has helped to heal more than four million wounds. We have partnerships with academic and research-based scientists to consult and analyze, driving collaboration to provide better outcomes for our patients.
Learn more about Diabetes Awareness.
1American Diabetes Association, Microvascular Complications and Foot Care: Standards of Medical Care in Diabetes 2020