Terms to Know: Diabetic Foot Ulcers

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by the WoundSource Editors

ADA Diabetic Foot Risk Classification Table: A tool to help identify patient risk factors and urgency that includes priorities, indications, timelines, and suggested follow-ups.

Becaplermin: An FDA-approved recombinant human platelet-derived growth factor used in full-thickness lower extremity diabetic ulcers with adequate blood flow. It is a topical agent that supports the wound healing process by providing an up to 43% greater incidence of healing neuropathic ulcers (over placebo gel).

Cellular and/or tissue-based products: These treatments can be cellular and acellular based and use FDA-approved biological materials (such as placental, amniotic, or chorionic-derived substances) to provide skin cells with fibroblasts and keratinocytes to promote tissue regeneration.

Collagen dressings: Dressings that stimulate new tissue growth by supporting and creating a scaffolding matrix that regulates extracellular components and moves the wound toward closure. These dressings are derived from bovine, porcine, equine, and avian sources.

Comparison cohort/observational studies: Studies using a study design that summarizes daily clinical practice by comparing alternative treatment approaches rather than comparing them with a placebo. This method reflects real-world clinical practices, but it can be confounded by indication, reliability, and validation of data sources.

Diabetic foot ulcer (DFU): An open sore or wound that is commonly found on the bottom of the foot of individuals with diabetes.

Hemoglobin A1c: A measurement crucial in understanding and maintaining proper glycemic control. High, prolonged levels of Hgb A1c (above 7%) are associated with increased risk for the development of a DFU.

MedWatch (FDA): The FDA’s reporting tool to collect data on medical safety of products. This tool monitors rates of adverse events and publishes safety alerts when necessary.

Neuroischemic DFU: One of the two categories of DFUs. These ulcers occur in feet with ischemia and are often associated with neuropathy. The feet are cool and pulseless, with thin, shiny, hairless skin.

Neuropathic DFU: One of the two categories of DFUs. These ulcers occur in warm, well-perfused feet with palpable pulses, diminished sweating, and dry skin that is prone to fissuring.

Offloading: A mechanism that provides for maximum pressure redistribution across the plantar surface of the foot, thus helping maintain perfusion and aid healing.

Retrospective studies: Studies using a study design that compares documented treatment approaches in a large patient database. These studies can be complicated when patients move between health care settings and receive various treatment interventions simultaneously.

The views and opinions expressed in this blog are solely those of the author, and do not represent the views of WoundSource, Kestrel Health Information, Inc., its affiliates, or subsidiary companies.

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