Chronic wounds affect 8.2 million patients annually. With an aging population and the increase incidents of diabetes and obesity, this number is expected to rise. If left untreated, chronic wounds become more severe, which not only affects quality of life but can also lead to limb loss.
We had a chance to sit down with Family Foot & Leg Center’s Dr. Sahiba Singh to discuss chronic wounds. Dr. Singh is one of several experts at FFLC who have vast knowledge and experience in advanced wound care.
Wounds vary from patient to patient, but when should you have your wound be seen by a doctor?
There are a lot of variables than can determine when you should seek medical treatment for wounds. In general, anyone who is considered high risk for developing infections should seek treatment immediately. High risk individuals include, but are not limited to, anyone with diabetes, compromised immune system, ESRD, obesity, active smoker, taking corticosteroids like prednisone, chronic edema/venous insufficiency, on a blood thinner, or have a history of poor circulation/ blood flow.
Additionally, if you experience trauma causing a laceration that is deeper than a quarter inch in length, the object that cut you was dirty or was rusty, bone, tendon or fat is exposed, the cut is over a joint, or if the bleeding won’t stop, you should seek treatment immediately as well.
For anyone, if your wound is not showing improvement in a week or two at max or signs of infection are noted, you should seek immediate treatment. Signs of infection include redness around the wound or redness spreading up the limb, fever/chills, pus or drainage, foul odor, warm or heat from the affected area, or increased pain. If in doubt, it is better to have your wound looked at than wait. The longer a wound is present, the more likely you could develop a severe limb threating infection. Once the infection spreads to the tendon and/ or bone the greater the risk of limb loss.
What qualities do you and your colleagues bring to patients that make your practice different?
We take the time getting to know our patients. Getting to know the full history of our patients allows us to determine the best course of treatment and care that encompasses every aspect of their conditions allowing us to treat the problem from all angles.
It’s important to understand that treating wounds takes advanced training. Not all physicians or podiatric physicians are trained in wound care, especially complex wounds. Here at Family Foot & Leg Center, we are all trained in advanced wound care and have access to the most up-to-date modalities (such as skin grafts derived from stem cells). Our comprehensive portfolio of regenerative medicine products that we use allow us to support patients from early in the wound healing process through to wound closure, regardless of wound type.
When medical providers are struggling with healing a wound, they refer their patients to Family Foot & Leg Center for our expertise in advanced wound care. By working in tandem with your primary care and specialist (cardiovascular, infectious disease, etc.) doctors, we can arrive at the best outcome.
What is the main thing you would like patients to know about chronic wounds?
First and foremost, it is important to be able to get in and see your doctor as soon as possible, especially when facing a time-sensitive condition such as a chronic wound. Many amputations could have been prevented if patients sought medical care sooner.
Family Foot & Leg Center offers same day or next day appointments. Scheduling an appointment is easy through our call center or online through our website.
Lastly, is there anything else a patient should know about your practice?
Our doctors are award-winning, board-certified, and highly trained. We treat all conditions of the foot and ankle in addition to being an advance wound care center.
Patients should also know that we accept the majority of insurance plans. Providing convenient quality care is essential to our practice, regardless of a patient’s condition, big or small. With multiple locations throughout Southwest Florida, it’s easy to get an appointment close to your work or home.
Sahiba Singh DPM, AACFAS
For more information, you may contact Dr. Sahiba Singh at Family Foot & Leg Center at (239) 430-3668.
Family Foot & Leg Center has 8 locations throughout Collier, Lee, & Charlotte Counties to quickly resolve all your foot and ankle problems.
Family Foot & Leg Center
6846 International Center Blvd, Suite B
Fort Myers, FL 33912
(239) 430-3668 (FOOT)