Preventing Major Amputations in Diabetic Patients without Major Operations
Having to undergo a major amputation like a below-‐knee-‐amputation (BKA) or above-‐knee-‐amputation (AKA) is one of the feared complications of Diabetes.
Patients with diabetes are at higher risk of amputations because of the damaging effects of diabetes on the patient’s nerves, arteries and immune (defense system against infection) system resulting in non-healing wounds can potentially lead to tissue death or gangrene
This can be prevented by:
Once wounds occur, the body requires good blood supply to allow for healing at the area of injury. If the wound gets infected, antibiotics to fight the infection cannot reach the injured area if the blood vessels that carry them there are blocked.
In order to overcome this, something needs to be done to bring good blood supply to the area of need.
In the past, Vascular surgeons perform a by-‐pass operation to bring blood across the area of blockage. This is a major procedure requiring long inpatient stay and involving high risk of stroke or heart attack during the operation.
In the past decade, Vascular Surgeons increasingly are replacing this with the process of angioplasty or ‘ballooning’ (Endovascular Surgery). This procedure does not need General Anaesthesia, reducing the operation risks significantly. Patients usually only need to stay overnight for monitoring after the procedure.
It is hoped that with this procedure Vascular Surgeons can prevent major amputations in patients with less invasive methods