Patients who’ve grown frustrated with hard-to-heal, infection-prone ulcers may benefit from Achilles tendon surgery to help with preventing diabetic foot ulcers.
The largest tendon in the human body, the Achilles connects calf muscles to the heel bone. The tendon naturally tightens with age, but diabetes exacerbates that process because increased blood sugar levels deposit glucose in the collagen. Stretching of the tendon becomes almost impossible as these glucose deposits greatly reduce elasticity.
A tight Achilles can lead to ulcers
With a tight Achilles, ankle movement is inhibited. This reduced mobility forces the patient to put excessive pressure on the front of the foot while simply walking. This increased pressure can lead to a heightened risk for ulcer development under the toe joints.
Foot ulcers are a common complication of diabetes, and they can be one of the worst. Slight cuts, blisters, or wounds can develop into an ulcer which is prone to infection and difficult to heal. Once the tissue is infected, a bone infection can follow. If this happens, amputation will often be required. Many of those suffering from diabetes will eventually face the loss of a toe, foot, or even a leg resulting from an infected foot ulcer.
Even if foot ulcers are properly treated and healed, new ones can develop quickly if the Achilles tendon is too tight to allow the foot and ankle to move naturally.
Surgery can release the tension
Fortunately, Achilles tendon surgery can help to reduce the risk of continuously developing new foot ulcers.
The surgery is considered minimally invasive. Three small pinpoint cuts are made to loosen and stretch the tendon. The entire procedure can be performed for most patients on an outpatient basis.
Dr. Pereira believes in giving every patient the chance to live the life they want. Using innovative surgical techniques to accomplish that goal is one of the ways he is able to help patients realize health outcomes they didn’t think were possible.
When foot ulcers keep coming back
If you’re suffering from diabetes but are continuously developing foot ulcers, talk to Dr. Pereira about treatments available to you. Achilles tendon surgery is just one example of how an innovative approach can help keep you active for years to come.
Other preventative measures, therapies, or surgeries may also benefit you. But you won’t know until you ask. By staying on the cutting edge of medicine and diabetes treatment, Dr. Pereira is able to offer patients options from an outside-the-box perspective. The first step to taking control of your condition is to give us a call today.