Wound Care and Foot & Ankle Specialist located in Mission Viejo, CA

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You might not automatically associate neuropathy with wound care, but damaged nerves are one of the top causes of non-healing ulcers. At Foot Ankle Leg Wound Care Orange County in Mission Viejo, California, double-board-certified podiatric surgeon and wound care specialist Thomas Rambacher, DPM, FACFAS, FAPWCA, has helped many people who have foot ulcers and pressure sores arising from neuropathy. Dr. Rambacher’s expertise and experience with advanced products and procedures accelerates healing and restores your health. Call the office or use online booking today to receive compassionate care for neuropathic wounds.

Neuropathy Q&A

What causes neuropathy?

Neuropathy, also called peripheral neuropathy, means you have a damaged nerve somewhere in your body, other than your brain or spinal cord. The condition has many possible causes, including:

  • Diabetes
  • Kidney disease
  • Thyroid disease
  • Vitamin B12 deficiency
  • Autoimmune diseases
  • Viral and bacterial infections
  • Certain medications
  • Traumatic injury

Diabetes causes 6 of 10 cases of peripheral neuropathy.

How does diabetes cause neuropathy?

High blood sugar can directly injure your nerves, damaging the nerve’s structure and disrupting its ability to function. You can also end up with neuropathy when high blood sugar damages arteries and interferes with the supply of oxygen-rich blood. The loss of blood results in nerve degeneration and death.

How will I know I have neuropathy?

You have three types of peripheral nerves: motor, autonomic, and sensory. They may all cause pain when damaged, but each type also has unique symptoms.  

Damaged motor neurons cause muscle pain, cramps, twitching, and weakness. Autonomic nerves lead to many symptoms because they control life-sustaining functions like your blood pressure, heart rate, breathing, and digestion.

Sensory nerves cause pain, tingling, burning, and numbness. Diabetic neuropathy affects sensory nerves, with the first symptoms appearing in your feet.

How is neuropathy treated?

Neuropathy treatment begins by addressing the condition damaging your nerves. Some peripheral nerves may heal once the cause is eliminated, depending on the severity of nerve damage.

Your treatment may also include medications and other interventions to ease your symptoms, lifestyle changes to protect your nerves, and wound care.

When does neuropathy need wound care?

Neuropathy leads to dangerous non-healing wounds (ulcers) when numbness makes it impossible to feel small cuts, abrasions, or excessive pressure that breaks down your skin.

Though neuropathy often causes diabetic foot wounds, neuropathic ulcers may develop anywhere, especially where a bone comes close to the skin’s surface (a bony prominence). Prominent bones put extra pressure on your skin, and this pressure inhibits blood flow, which in turn leads to a pressure ulcer. 

Foot wounds and pressure ulcers don’t heal on their own. Instead, the wound keeps getting larger, putting you at risk of developing dangerous infections.

Dr. Rambacher provides expert wound care, including today’s most advanced dressings, skin and bone infection treatment, and surgical wound care when needed.

Call Foot Ankle Leg Wound Care Orange County if you have questions about neuropathy or book an appointment online for expert wound care.