- Diseases, Disorders & Conditions
Surgery and Treatment for Non-Diabetic Foot Ulcers
Getting treated for Foot Ulcers
Foot ulcers, that too below your feet, are very painful and discomforting to your daily routine. You can't walk properly as you experience extreme pain even if your foot gets a simple jolt or gets placed carelessly while walking. So, you can't perform your tasks involving standing or walking positions.
Getting a minor surgery and some proper medical treatment can provide you much relief within a short period of time. I have been suffering from the ulcers for years with the fear of undergoing an operation. But, now I realized that it is a very simple and minor surgery if the ulcers are not too much deep-rooted into the feet. This realization occurred because of the surgery underwent by me without further prolongation of the hesitation or fear.
Now, let me narrate my own experiences of undergoing the surgery in both my feet that developed two ulcers each and the further medical treatment that I got.
Ulcer Meaning and Causes for Ulcers
An ulcer is a painful, hurting sore which generally develops on the outer surface or on the inner surface of your skin causing much tension to your body. Ulcers generally develop due to some break in the skin while performing your daily activities or due to a blood clot and excessive pressure exerted on a certain point of your body. It develops into an ulcer if you do not immediately notice the open sore and get it treated. The area becomes infected due to the breaking of the skin that gets contaminated very quickly. Damaged nerves, tight fittings, and accumulation of bacteria cause severe ulcers.
How the Foot Ulcer started in my case
It was due to some carelessness during the rainy season while living in a flooded locality many years back that I caught some infection in my feet which fact was not known to me for many months (years) because of my habit of wearing shoes those years.
That too, I had to wear tight shoes because of my wide toes. No exact fitting shoes of my foot size were available at the prices that were affordable to me.
Some sand or pebbles in the mud might have entered into my wet shoes and cut open the skin of my feet. Due to continued wearing of the shoes for long hours in that wet condition for months might have infected my feet. When I noticed some pain in my feet with small dark spots, I consulted a Doctor after some months and took some antibiotic medicines. The problem looked solved for some period and I ignored the black spots for many years and continued wearing the shoes.
Even if I experienced pain, I became habituated to it. After many years that those black spots grew into some visible ulcers creating much tension in my daily activities.
Consulting the Doctor and taking Appointment for Surgery
Only recently that I consulted the Endocrinologist with my problem and that too on the advice of my Cardiologist.
I am getting treatment from a Senior Consultant Cardiologist for my BP and minor heart problems for the last some years. Recently, I was experiencing swelling in my legs since the last 5 months besides the foot ulcer problem which has become unbearable to me since one year. I thought the swelling in feet and the ulcer problem might be inter-linked. So, I informed the Doctor about my ulcers in the feet. He looked at them and got serious that I was bearing them since so long. He referred me to a surgeon who treats for the foot ulcers, whether diabetic or non-diabetic. He asked me to consult him and get the surgery done for the ulcers immediately even though they are not related to the swelling of my feet and legs.
So, after 3, 4 days, I met the ulcers Doctor and showed him my feet. The Doctor, who is an Endocrinologist owning his own Hospital, advised me to go through a minor surgery in both of my legs to get rid of those ulcers permanently. He assured me that it requires only a simple operation which takes hardly 5 minutes each foot and with no pain at all as I will be injected with a mild local anesthetic injection. So, I made up my mind to go through it and fixed a date for the surgery to one leg for the time being telling him that the other leg will be got done the next month. As I have to do all the work at home, I can't afford both legs got operated at the same time and take bed rest for a long duration. That is why I got the surgery done for each foot in two different periods.
Making Preparations for the Ulcer Surgery
You need to make some preparations for going through the surgery.
- The first thing to do is to make up your mind well prepared for going through the surgery fully aware of the initial pain that you may have to face during surgery and the fact that you will not be in a position to perform your functions properly during the recovery period.
- Now, after making up the mind, you need to plan for the jobs that you may need to execute within the time period available before getting operated. These tasks are those that you only can perform and nobody else can be depended upon. So, you will fix the date of surgery according to this schedule only.
- For other things which can be got done through your family members and friends, you may not need to worry that much as you can get the work done as and when it becomes due. For example, I had to get my work mostly done through my son who is already busy with his own work and we are the only two persons presently in my house. So, I had to get the food purchased from outside both times daily for 5 days and take his help in serving the food to me, and for preparing coffee, tea, etc. He kept water at my reach in a jug and the medicines, phone, newspaper, and other things nearer to me so that I need not walk again and again for these things. Only for bathroom and toilet, I had to put some efforts with the support of walls as I was advised not put pressure on the foot for at least 2, 3 days. Thereafter, I can walk in and around the house by wearing the special diabetic shoes.
- You may think of other priorities and tasks according to your schedule so as to be well-prepared for a tension-free treatment.
Operated Ulcers Healing
Your opinion matters please
Did you have any experience with ulcer patients?
The Ulcer Surgery Procedure
- Before taking you to the operation room, an allergy test is conducted by injecting a sample injection into your forearm to test whether your body is not allergic to penicillin and other injections that may need to be administered during surgery. This is done one hour or 30 minutes before the surgery.
- After satisfying that it is okay with no rashes or pimples developing around the tested skin, you will be taken to the operation room and asked to lie down on the bed with your foot placed on an elevated ridge of the bed.
- Your foot ulcer and its surrounding portions are neatly cleaned by the nurse with saline (sodium chloride) water and made ready for the surgeon to operate.
- The surgeon will inject some local anesthesia at the point of ulcer telling you that it is simply a small injection to get rid of pain during the surgery. You may experience like some needle is being pierced into the foot for a minute or so.
- Even while he is injecting the injection, it seems that the surgeon starts performing his surgery simultaneously and by the time you may try to realize what is happening, he may announce that the surgery is over and will wish you Goodluck.
- Then, the surgeon will leave the room and the nurse will dress your foot with bandage applying some lotion or cream to the operated place.
- You are required to keep lying on the bed for some more time to check that no bleeding is there.
- Thereafter, you will be removed to another bed in a room and required to rest there for about one more hour so as to confirm that no bleeding is happening and you can move safely if you want immediate discharge.
Ulcer Surgery Healing Time
- The healing time after undergoing the surgery depends on the seriousness of the problem and the nature of your body as well as on the medication and your food habits.
- As per my experience, I could walk comfortably in the rooms from the 3rd day onwards.
- The medicines are generally prescribed for 5 days. Some Doctors may prescribe it for 3 days and then extend for another 3 days, making it 6 days.
- You need to wear the bandage for at least 7 days and may extend to 10 or 15 days depending upon the ulcer.
- For my first leg, I discontinued dressing the foot after 10 days itself. But, the dressing of the second foot that is operated on 5th May is still continuing as on today, the 13th day after surgery. I hope it may take 15 days or so to cure.
Footwear for Ulcer Feet
Comfortable Footwear for Ulcer Feet
Ulcer Surgery Medication Side Effects and Complications
There can be some side effects or complications that may be faced by you while being treated after the surgery. It is not necessarily a problem with every case. Some rare incidents may occur due to the physiology or nature of your body.
- Generally, the medication prescribed can cause diarrhea or loose motions in some cases. This happened to me during my first surgery. The medicine power might have been of high power dosage and I caught loose motions from the 3rd day. I have been prescribed with Dalacin C 300mg, ACECLO Plus, and Nexpro RD 40mg medication at that time. When I reported to the doctor about my loose motions, I was asked to stop the medicine on the 5th day afternoon instead continuing it for 6 days.
- Sometimes, you may experience some itching or rashes also due to the heat of the medicines. I had to face skin rashes in my arm on the 8th day and I informed the doctor immediately. He advised me to take ATARAX 10mg tablets once daily for 3 days to get rid of the rashes and they vanished on the second day itself.
- During my second foot surgery, I did not face any side effects of the treatment. They have changed my medication to Monocef O 200mg, ACECLO Plus, and PAN 40 and prescribed that medication only for a 5-day period.
About Foot Ulcer Treatment video
The below video gives more stress on Diabetic foot ulcers. But, it is equally applicable for non-diabetic foot ulcers also. So, you need to watch at these instructions and follow the tips carefully to give a better treatment for your feet and get rid of the ulcers and other related complications.
Foot Ulcer facts and treatment
Top Facts to remember while getting the Ulcer Surgery
- Better keep in touch with Doctor when suffering from an ulcer.
- Inform the Doctor about all your present and other related previous health issues and treatments received.
- When he advises for the surgery, it is better to go through it as soon as possible instead of lingering and making it complicated.
- Fix your schedule of tasks to be performed and plan for a smart way of executing them during your ailment period.
- You need to wear the bandage till complete curation of the operated part. It should be carefully protected from getting wet or infected. Get the dressing changed daily or as per instructions of the Doctor.
- If you experience any problems or complications like diarrhea, itching, rashes in the skin, dizziness, etc., stop the medicine and consult the Doctor immediately and do as per his advice.
- It is better to wear some footwear even in your house and for bathrooms as the ulcer prone feet are mostly sensitive to water, dust, coldness, and marble floors.