What is limb preservation and amputation prevention?
Limb preservation refers to the crucial steps taken in order to save a damaged limb from amputation. Amputation of a limb may be needed when there is serious infection, a wound that won’t heal, or poor circulation (typically in the legs) that causes tissue to die.
Patients with vascular disease are at high risk for foot and leg wounds that do not heal and may ultimately require amputation to save their lives. Severe cases of Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) can cause irreversible tissue damage and increase the risk for amputation if not treated.
Our team of vascular surgeons at CTVS provide advanced treatment alternatives with the goal to intervene early, improve blood flow, heal wounds, and to prevent major limb amputations. We are experts in treating Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD) and administering limb preservation therapies to avoid a situation where amputation is necessary.
For more information, contact our Limb Preservation and Amputation Prevention Program Director Jamie Beffort, RN at (512) 323-5873.
Who is at risk for amputation?
Many factors place people at risk for amputation or loss of a limb. Our program offers advanced techniques for treating limb threatening conditions or diseases with the goal of amputation prevention. These conditions or diseases include:
- Advanced Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD)
- Uncontrolled diabetes
- Chronic leg pain
- Critical limb ischemia
- Non-healing leg or foot wounds
- Peripheral neuropathy
- Kidney failure
- Damaged tissues from a serious infection or traumatic injury
- Other venous disorders or vascular disease
Diabetes affects more than half the patients we treat, and poorly controlled diabetes prevents wound healing and can lead to amputation. Please see our page all about diabetes and amputation prevention for more details.
Treatments for PAD and how to avoid an amputation
In order to decrease your risk for potential amputation, it is important to keep your general health in check. That means eating well, staying active, avoiding tobacco use, and taking your regular medications as directed to help manage high blood pressure, cholesterol, and diabetes.
Our goal at CTVS is to always save a limb by any means necessary. We provide a wide range of diagnostics and therapies all conveniently located within our own practice to treat PAD and other vascular conditions in order to prevent a leg or foot amputation including:
- Diagnostics and evaluation: to gauge artery and vein function
- Medical therapy: to promote your overall good health including counseling for tobacco cessation and guidance on nutrition and exercise
- Minimally invasive surgical procedures: to restore blood flow and improve circulation
- Surgical revascularization: open surgical techniques such as bypass and endarterectomy for when minimally-invasive treatments are not effective at increasing blood flow
- Wound care: working with podiatry and other wound care specialists to maximize wound care and promote healing
When necessary, our vascular surgeons perform amputations to save patients from life-threatening complications. We work with prosthetic companies to help patients return to activities of daily living as soon as possible.
Our CTVS board-certified vascular surgeons specializing in limb preservation and amputation prevention are:
- Phillip Church, MD, FACS
- John Politz, MD, FACS
- Stephen Settle, MD, FACS
- Joe Wells III, MD, FACS
- Scott Seidel, MD, FACS, RVT
- Jeffery Apple, MD, FACS
- Bradley Boone, MD, FACS
- David Nation, MD, FACS
- Ryan Turley, MD
- Taylor Smith, MD, FACS, RPVI
- Nicolas Zea, MD, FACS, RPVI