No Wound is Too Small if it Lingers - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

No Wound is Too Small if it Lingers

Dr. Jesus Hidalgo (Source: KCBD) Dr. Jesus Hidalgo (Source: KCBD)

There are approximately 160,000 amputations every year in this country. Half of those procedures come to patients with diabetes.

Dr. Jesus Hidalgo, an Advanced Wound Care Specialist at the Wound Care Center at Covenant Health, says it's a common misconception that wounds will eventually heal on their own. But, he says, the sooner you take a wound to the doctor, the better your chance at avoiding amputation, because even the tiniest spot can be dangerous if it's still there after a month or so.  

He says, "It's like an iceberg. You see the tip, but you don't know how deep and how bad that wound is.  So, if we get those patients in a timely fashion in 30 to 60 days, they have a chance to do better."

He explains the reason there is such concern among diabetes is many with that condition suffer from Neuropathy. That can mask the pain in some nerves.

So, Dr. Hidalgo says often, those patients don't feel the pain from a wound and don't even know there is a wound until it is discovered when they seek medical attention for something else. By then, he says the wound may be too far advanced to treat successfully.

Furthermore, amputation is not the worst that can happen. Dr. Hidalgo says any amputation then increases the chance of an early death in those patients.

So, he hopes patients and family doctors will remember that a nagging wound should be taken to a wound care specialist for the best care because that specialist is trained to find and treat difficult wounds with specialized tools.

The Center for Wound Care and Hyperbaric Medicine at Covenant Health is located at 4000 Place, Suite 100. Dr. Jesus Hidalgo is the Medical Director.

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