We might all be familiar with ulcers in a general manner, but certain types of ulcers behave quite differently due to various contributing factors. These are nonhealing ulcers or nonhealing wounds, and if not treated with care and in good time, such wounds can pose a serious risk to the patient’s health. Severe cases may lead to amputation of the affected limbs or loss of life in the most extreme circumstances. The nonhealing ulcers cases we treat here at Pedes Orange County fall under peripheral arterial disease (PAD) and a subcategory of arterial disease.
Non-healing wounds or ulcers do not follow the usual healing process and are referred to as chronic wounds should they persist beyond 3 weeks. Such wounds can be a heavy burden to live with for anyone. Still, the board-certified vascular surgeons and specialists at Pedes Orange County are dedicated to administering effective treatment and management solutions to all patients so they may resume a healthy, productive, and pain-free life.
Types of Non-Healing Ulcers
In general, patients will present with one of three categories of non-healing ulcers, with these categories being broadly defined by the major causative factors allowing for their development. These are:
Symptoms of Non-Healing Ulcers
You shouldn’t allow a wound to fester for weeks on end before seeking professional assistance, especially if you fall under one or more of the risk categories we’ve outlined above. The following are some warning signs to look out for:
Darkening or bluish discoloration around the wound edges
- Significant pain around the wound that persists without improvement or progressively grows worse
Foul odor or smell emanating from the wound
Swelling and redness emanating from the wound and spreading to surrounding skin and tissue
Continuous leaking, draining, or weeping from the wound.
Notice that these symptoms are mostly indicative of infection. This is a good measure as it often indicates a failure of the body’s natural mechanisms to deal with the wound through its normal processes. The rapid and timely intervention will be called for to forestall further tissue damage and complications.
Treatment of Non-Healing Wounds
As we’ve seen, there is a very wide range of causes that may contribute to the formation and persistence of non-healing ulcers. It follows that the methods or treatment options at the disposal of healthcare professionals will also be varied. Doctors will discuss the available options with their patients in order to arrive at the best possible options, but the type and severity of the wound will be the decisive point of consideration. These measures include:
What to Expect from Your Visit to Pedes
Your treatment will begin with an ultrasound examination of your veins, arteries, or both, in your legs to diagnose the presence and extent of the disease. Your test results will be immediately available to review with the doctor.
Once we review the results of your diagnostic tests, our physicians will help you develop a plan to provide you with the best treatment for your disease.
Depending on the extent of disease in your arteries or veins, our specialists may recommend minimally invasive intervention and/or prescribe medications to help your symptoms.
It is important to make sure that you return for every scheduled follow-up appointment to ensure that your disease is appropriately monitored. If you ever have any questions or concerns, please call or schedule a follow-up appointment with our staff.