While you may have never seen a film or production she has acted in, chances are you recognize the name Zsa Zsa Gabor. The Budapest born actress has made many headlines over the years with her extravagant lifestyle and happenings. News broke earlier this week that she was going to have a life saving limb amputation. More recent articles note that doctors are trying strong antibiotic therapy first. Her publicist reported that an unhealing, long-standing wound became quite larger over the holidays before she was admitted to the hospital. Doctors worry that this infected wound could be life threatening. While we wish her the best as she attempts to heal, these headlines give us here at AFAS an opportunity to discuss wound care, infection and amputation.
Amputation is the absolute last resort. It is only when an infection has spread throughout a limb and becomes life threatening that doctors will utilize amputation to save your life. There is well documented evidence that amputation of a limb decreases your lifespan. This fact has decreased the number of amputations preformed in recent years and put more emphasis on treating the causes that lead to it.
When dealing with wounds, it is imperative that you follow your doctor’s instructions. Hygiene, proper bandaging and bandage changing go a long way in keeping infection at bay. In Zsa Zsa’s case, being restricted to a wheel chair and history of blood clots likely inhibited wound healing. Proper blood flow is absolutely necessary to properly heal a wound. As part of wound healing, Dr. Thomajan will assess your blood pressures in your legs and refer you to a vascular specialist if needed. Good blood flow allows your body to deliver healing nutrients and immune system cells to fight off infection. You may be prescribed antibiotics if an infection is identified. It is important to take all of your prescription. By closely following instructions to keep weight off the wound and proper wound hygiene, you can heal longstanding wounds and avoid amputation. Make a visit to AFAS today if you have a wound that has been present for more than 2 weeks without any changes.
Until next time, keep those feet happy and healthy Austin!