Gangrene - Describe Your Experience

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What is gangrene?

Gangrene is a term that describes dead or dying body tissue(s) that occur because the local blood supply to the tissue is either lost or is inadequate to keep the tissue alive. Gangrene has been recognized as a localized area of tissue death since ancient times. The Greeks used the term gangraina to describe putrefaction (death) of tissue. Although many laypeople associate the term gangrene with a bacterial infection, the medical use of the term includes any cause that compromises the blood supply that results in tissue death. Consequently, a person can be diagnosed with gangrene but does not have to be "infected."

There are two major types of gangrene, referred to as dry and wet. Many cases of dry gangrene are not infected. All cases of wet gangrene are considered to be infected, almost always by bacteria. The most common sites for both wet and dry gangrene to occur are the digits (fingers and toes) and other extremities (hands, arms, feet, and legs).

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Comment from: ZAHEER, 35-44 Male (Caregiver) Published: November 07

My wife was suffering from the wet gangrene in the right foot sole (heel) and she is also diabetic (IDDM). We had gone for treating this problem at the hospital and the doctors cleaned her wound and removed the dead tissue and skin; they did this 4 times. Every time they cut the wound they advised us to maintain the blood glucose and not walk or use that foot. She first took antibiotic Augmentin 1G twice a day for ten days. After the third time when they removed black tissue from the foot they changed to Avelox 400mg once a day for further ten days along with pain killers. But during that she was suffering many times with acute fever and cold and the dressing of wound with antiseptic lotion (Eusol) was painful and she would tell me to avoid cleaning the wound in the hospital because the infection was close to heel bone. They did not admit her in the hospital for proper hospitalized treatment. Now in serious condition we decided to try other therapies for healing the wound. Last night I took my wife to a remedy clinic, which also treats diabetic patient's wounds. They checked her and advised some additional medicines for clots and painkiller tablets with antibiotic injection Tienam 500mg (imipenem and cilastatin sodium MSD) plus dressing of the wound. Last night she slept well.

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Comment from: sunshinerita, 55-64 Female (Patient) Published: September 08

I am now 64 years old. When I was 15 years old in 1965, I was admitted to the hospital with sinusitis, meningitis, Bell's palsy and a fever of 106. It was determined ultimately that the sinus condition caused the leaking of bacteria into my brain and gangrene was formed in the frontal lobes of my brain. I went through bilateral sinus surgeries, a temperature of 106 for about 2 to 3 weeks, bone marrow depression from massive dosages of antibiotics, anemia, and bleeding in my intestines. I suffered from difficulty recognizing faces and poor impulse control for many years. To this day, I still experience residual weakness, difficulty recognizing faces, occasional depression, and an inability to walk/stand for more than 3 to 5 minutes.

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