There are many foot issues that come with the diabetic foot. Of them, a diabetic foot ulcer is among the most dangerous. There are a tremedous number of treatments for a diabetic foot ulcer, including antibiotics, specialized dressings, grafts, bracing, casting, and more. In the past, however while the use of each was based on present qualities of the ulcer, the decision to switch often became arbitrary and based on the response, or lack thereof, to the current therapy.
Fortunately, a new-state-of-the-art diagnostic tool is available and, in my Houston practice, has proven to be indispensable in determining the characteristics of my patients' wounds. Rather than traditional cultures for bacteria, in which the samples denature in the matter of a few hours, I am using a new type of culture that examines the DNA of the bacteria in the ulcer.
Some things to consider:
- There are commonly many different bacteria infecting the biofilm on the surface of the wound. Most of these are unlikely to be identified by a traditional culture but are very specifically found in a DNA examination
- Over 95% of organisms infecting the biofilm of the wound cannot be assessed using a traditional culture. Being able to identify these bacteria will speed the healing time significantly and improve the patients' quality of life.
- Evaluating the DNA allows us to personalize your treatment to the specificity that DNA analysis provides.
Examining the DNA of bacteria within the wound leads to a much more specific accounting of which are involved. It also provides specific antibiotic recommendations that would be most effective. These antibiotics may be in oral, IV, and even topical form. After following these recommendations with my patients, I have seen rapid progression in the wounds towards healing, with some longstanding ulcers completely healed within weeks.
This DNA culture of foot ulcers is covered by Medicare and private insurance companies. This test is performed by PathoGenius, which has worked with NASA, NIH, and many national companies on DNA bacterial analysis. Tomorrow's medical evaluation is available today! If you have a chronic wound of any type that you have not been able to get healed, contact Dr. Andrew Schneider at Tanglewood Foot Specialists for an appointment and for this quick, easy, and painless evaluation.