If the doctor determines that a wound or ulcer on your feet or legs is infected, or if the wound has high risk of becoming infected, such as a cat bite, antibiotics will be prescribed to treat the infection or the potential infection. It is very important that you take the entire course of antibiotics as prescribed. Generally, you should see some improvement in the wound in 2-3 days and may see improvement the first day. For limb- or life-threatening infections, you will be admitted to the hospital and given IV antibiotics. Less serious infections may be treated with pills as an outpatient. The doctor may give you a single dose of antibiotics as a shot or IV dose prior to starting pills in the clinic or Emergency Department.
We have our own setup for the management of diabetic lower extremity wounds and ulcers along with other difficult-to-treat wounds. In our multidisciplinary center, professionals of many specialties including doctors, nurses, and therapists work with you in developing a treatment plan for your wound or leg ulcer. Treatment plans may include surgical debridement of your wound, improvement of circulation through surgery or therapy, special dressings, and antibiotics. The plan may include a combination of treatments.
Referral to podiatrist or orthopedic surgeon: If you have bone-related problems, toenail problems, corns and calluses, hammertoes, bunions, flat feet, heel spurs, arthritis, or have difficulty with finding shoes that fit, your physician may refer you to one of these specialists. They create shoe inserts, prescribe shoes, remove calluses and have expertise in surgical solutions for bone problems. They can also be an excellent resource for how to care for your feet routinely. Home health care: Your doctor may prescribe a home health nurse or aide to help with wound care and dressings, monitor your blood sugar, and help you take your antibiotics and other medications properly during the healing period.