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Diabetes: Amputation for Foot Problems

Overview

If you have diabetes, a minor foot injury, like a blister, can develop into an ulcer or serious infection.

Infections of the feet can spread to the leg. Sometimes the infection is so severe that toes, the foot, or part of the leg must be removed by surgery (amputation).

Amputations are done if the foot or leg can't be saved or if there is major tissue damage. Doctors save as much of the foot or leg as possible. They try to make sure that the remaining part of the limb will heal to avoid more surgeries.

If you need an amputation, talk to your doctor about the benefits. Amputation can relieve pain, as well as get rid of the infection and the need for strong antibiotics. A serious infection can be life-threatening. An amputation may save your life.

Having an amputation can be difficult. If you want support, ask your doctor about counseling.

Credits

Current as of: October 2, 2023

Author: Healthwise Staff
Clinical Review Board
All Healthwise education is reviewed by a team that includes physicians, nurses, advanced practitioners, registered dieticians, and other healthcare professionals.

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated, disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Learn how we develop our content.

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated, disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Learn how we develop our content.

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