Promoting Healing of Diabetic Foot Ulcers

Oksana Davidovich, BSc, DCh (Chiropodist), Private Practice: Davisville Foot Clinic; President of the Ontario Society of Chiropodists, Toronto, ON.

Diabetic neuropathic foot ulcers, often a precursor to amputation, occur in high-pressure areas on the sole of the foot. Ulcer healing can be achieved through a combination of wound management and a variety of offloading modalities. Total contact casts and removable cast walkers are effective methods for facilitating wound closure. Alternatively, a wide range of temporary, weight-relief shoes and healing sandals are also effective in resolving active ulcers. Once the wound has healed, prevention strategies typically include custom-made, modified, or premade orthopedic shoes used in conjunction with foot orthoses, as well as a regular podiatric examination to screen for potential complications.

Key words: diabetic foot, foot ulcer, cast, orthopedic footwear, foot orthoses.