Empowering Patients: The Role of Education in Charcot Foot Surgical Reconstruction

Charcot Neuroarthropathy (CN) is a condition that can occur in people with diabetes who have significant neuropathy. It is a progressive and inflammatory condition that weakens the soft tissues, bones, and joints of the foot and ankle. If left untreated, it can lead to devastating consequences, such as deformity, ulceration, and infection. In the worst-case scenario, it may result in limb amputation.

According to the International Diabetes Federation (IDF), diabetic foot and lower limb complications are a leading cause of morbidity, affecting 40 to 60 million people with diabetes worldwide. Complications from diabetic feet often result in hospitalizations, poor quality of life, and increased healthcare costs. Here are some additional facts to know about diabetes:

  • Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death in the U.S.
  • Up to 7.5% of diabetic patients may develop Charcot Neuroarthropathy
  • Every year in the U.S. almost 100,000 patients with diabetes will suffer an amputation
  • Worldwide, 85% of leg amputations are a result of a diabetic foot ulcer

Chronic ulceration, when accompanied by ischemia and infection, dramatically increases the risk of major amputation. Lower limb amputation in people with diabetes is 10 to 20 times more common compared to those without diabetes.

Often, the initial discussion with a diabetic foot patient is in the emergency room. In some cases, the severity of the pathology will be too high to save the limb. It is crucial for patients with Charcot Foot to receive timely medical attention to prevent the progression of the disease. Early diagnosis allows for interventions such as immobilization, offloading, and proper wound care, which can effectively halt the destructive process. Additionally, appropriate treatment measures, such as orthotic devices and surgical interventions, may be implemented to correct deformities and restore function. By recognizing the symptoms and seeking medical help early on, patients with Charcot Foot can significantly reduce the risk of amputation and long-term disability, ensuring a better quality of life.

The Orthofix “Stand on your feet” set consists of 10 patient-aimed cards offered to healthcare providers for educating their patients. The purpose is to make patients (diagnosed or potential CN patients) more aware about Charcot Neuroarthropathy and its management. This will not only help patients better manage their Charcot Neuroarthropathy but also foster a stronger doctor-patient relationship based on open and informed discussions. The following topics are explored:

  • Understand Charcot Foot and Ankle
  • Be Aware of Charcot Foot and Ankle Complications
  • Talk to Your Family Doctor
  • Understand Charcot Foot and Ankle Diagnosis
  • Check Your Feet to Prevent Charcot Foot Complications
  • Understand Charcot Foot and Ankle Progression
  • Explore Charcot Foot and Ankle Treatment Options
  • Find Your Multidisciplinary Team
  • Dos and Don’ts in Charcot Foot Management
  • Charcot Foot Frequently Asked Questions

Orthofix partners with healthcare professionals on restoring anatomy, restoring function, and restoring quality of life. Our Charcot portfolio is designed to put together the fixation elements and the services to help our surgeons and their patients in the best way possible. If you want to know more about incidence, causes, symptoms and diagnosis of Charcot Neuropathy in the Diabetic Foot, you may also want to visit this site: https://abs.orthofix.it/charcot-neuropathy-in-the-diabetic-foot/

If you or someone close to you is dealing with Charcot Neuropathy, it may be beneficial to explore  www.LimbHealing.com for valuable insight into early detection and treatment options. This resourceful website can provide you with useful information to better understand and manage this condition.