Minor wounds, cuts, and burns are an unavoidable part of life. The body is designed to heal itself, unless a medical condition, like diabetes, interferes with that process.
Foot problems are a well-known risk associated with diabetes. The disease can cause reduced blood flow to the feet, depriving them of oxygen and nutrients. This makes it more difficult for blisters, sores, and cuts to heal. Diabetic nerve damage called peripheral neuropathy can also cause numbness in your feet. “When you can't feel cuts and blisters, you're more likely to get sores and infections,” explains Tyson Green, DPM, foot and ankle specialist with the Center for Orthopaedics and medical director of the CHRISTUS Ochsner Wound Center. “If you don't notice or treat these sores, they can become deeply infected, leading to foot ulcers, sepsis and even amputation.”
Research shows that about 60% of all diabetic patients will eventually experience a wound that does not heal, putting them at risk for more serious complications. Unfortunately, having a toe, foot, or lower leg surgically removed is 10 times more likely in people with diabetes.
“Diabetic foot ulcers are one complication of the disease that has continued to frustrate doctors and significantly affect the quality of life of patients,” says Dr. Green. “We know one of the keys to successful wound treatment lies in the body’s capacity to heal, but in a diabetic patient, the body’s natural healing capabilities are blocked by the disease itself. But an innovative new treatment, the 3C Patch System, allows us to harness the healing properties within a patient’s own blood to help heal their wound.”
The 3C name reflects the 3-step process used to create the healing patch: centrifugation, coagulation and compaction. Using just a small sample of the patient’s blood – nothing else – the 3C Patch System separates, coagulates and compacts the blood components into a solid patch. The result is a healing patch comprised of a concentration of proteins, cells and growth factors.
One of few evidence-based wound treatments, the 3C Patch is clinically proven to significantly accelerate wound healing of hard-to-heal diabetic foot ulcers. The outcome is a cost-effective, personalized wound treatment that draws on each patient’s inherent capability to heal themselves.
Dr. Green says each 3C Patch takes about 20 minutes to produce and is applied directly to the wound at point-of-care. Multiple patches can be applied to larger wounds, and several weeks of 3C patch treatments are typically required.
“This process, while technologically advanced, really makes innate sense,” says Dr. Green. “It gives us a way to work around the vascular inefficiencies caused by the patient’s diabetes but still deliver their body’s healing properties where needed. This provides a treatment that is uniquely and biologically theirs, not a one-size-fits-all solution. We’re taking a person’s own blood, with no manipulation other than spinning in a centrifuge, to create a healing patch that delivers their own highly concentrated white cells, platelets and growth factors directly to the wound,” he explains. “It’s very exciting to have something like this to offer our patients and see the successful results.”
For more information, call 337-430-3282.