Common Themes of Wound Care in Podiatry: A Review

Author: Madeleine Robben
Major: Biochemistry
Approved: Spring 2020
Status: Completed

In podiatry, diabetic foot ulcers are included as one of the most prominent patient afflictions. Diabetes has become a household term that many are familiar with and with the disease’s increase in popularity, the corresponding complication increases also. Diabetic foot ulcers belong in a class of their own as they are especially difficult to treat as diabetics tend to have poor blood flow to their extremities allowing blood clotting factors to flood the wound site and start the blood coagulation cascade. In many cases, blood clotting is not encouraged, but it can be a beautiful concept in wound care. Additionally, diabetics are associated with neuropathy, or a lack of feeling or sensation, especially in the pedal region. Without feeling, patients seen typically start ulcers by ignoring pressure points due to the lack of pain and continuously applying pressure to them until a stubborn wound reveals itself.

Due to the need for less invasive and more effective treatment of this affliction, medicine is scrambling for new and innovative technologies that may alleviate the ailment. This research is done in effort to contribute to this cause. In this project, a patient study is conducted at the Salem Veteran Affairs Hospital using a new product called RedDress. Essentially, a blood sample from the patient is obtained and clotted using RedDress. The clot looks like a patch and is applied as a typical skin graft would be applied directly to the wound in clinic. Directly applying this clot supplies the missing clotting factors to the wound, so that the environment can create its own clot to accelerate the healing and hopeful closing of the ulcerated wound. While using this sample, a group of patients’ healing results will be observed and compared to consider the success of the technology.