If you have a wound on your foot, it is important to watch for signs of infection. An infected foot wound can lead to serious complications if left untreated, including the possibility of amputation. Our experienced Twin Falls wound care podiatrist can help treatments for infected foot wounds to prevent severe outcomes from happening.
Common Signs of an Infected Foot Wound
If you have a condition such as diabetes, which can cause a loss of sensation in the feet, it can be hard to detect a foot wound since you may not feel pain. When a foot wound goes undetected, it is more likely to become infected.
Signs that a foot wound has become infected include the following:
- Increased pain. If you do not have a loss of sensation in your feet, pain may indicate that a foot wound has become infected. You may experience pain around the area of the wound that is worsening.
- Swelling and redness. An infected wound will become more inflamed as your body reacts to the infection. The skin around the wound may appear red and swollen, which is a sign that there is an infection developing in the wound.
- Pus or drainage. Pus is a sure sign of infection. Pus may be yellow, green, or white in color and indicates there is bacteria present in the wound. Pus or drainage may be visible on your socks if the wound is infected.
- Foul odor. An infected wound may produce a distinct, unpleasant odor resulting from the bacteria breaking down tissue.
- Fever. A foot infection can sometimes produce a fever as your immune system reacts to the invading bacteria.
- Red streaks. Red lines or streaks indicate the infection is advancing further into the body along the lymph channels. This is a sign that the infection is progressing rapidly.
- Lack of healing. Wounds that show no signs of healing despite proper care may be infected. The bacteria are hindering the normal healing process.
- Dead tissue. Bacteria can cause tissue death, which appears as grey, yellow, or black tissue in the wound. This dead tissue provides an environment for further bacterial growth.
The Importance of Treating an Infected Foot Wound
The development of an infected foot wound requires prompt medical treatment. A podiatrist has extensive training in diagnosing and treating foot infections to get patients started on the appropriate antibiotics and wound care. Ignoring the signs of infection and delaying treatment raises the risk of the infection advancing deeper into the foot and leg.
Our Twin Falls podiatrist understands the importance of treating an infected foot wound at its earliest stage. Prompt treatment is crucial for preventing amputation. Left untreated, a severe foot infection can spread into the bone. The infection causes severe damage, requiring amputation of the infected part of the foot or leg. If an infection cannot be controlled, amputation is done to save a patient's life.
While modern podiatric and surgical techniques can help avoid amputation in many cases, it is far better to diagnose and treat foot infections early before they progress to threatening the limb. No one wants to face losing a foot or part of their leg due to complications of infection.
Wound Care Treatment Options
Your Twin Falls podiatrist will determine the best treatment for your wound. They may recommend antibiotics to treat the infection and may clean the wound. At Advanced Foot & Ankle, we offer advanced treatment options to treat foot wounds and prevent amputations of the feet and toes, such as UltraMist and MLS laser therapy.
UltraMist is an innovative system that uses low-frequency ultrasound therapy to debride and treat foot wounds. The technology of UltraMist permits ultrasound energy to reach deeper into the wound, not just the surface of the wound. UltraMist has many benefits, such as improving blood flow and decreasing inflammation. This creates an ideal environment for healing wounds and diabetic foot ulcers.
MLS Laser Therapy
MLS laser therapy is an advanced treatment option not only used to treat chronic pain but also to help repair and heal tissue in a foot wound. This therapy uses light energy to help wounds close faster and boosts your immune system, reducing infection risk.