Gangrene: Symptoms & Signs

Gangrene refers to dead or dying tissue in the body that develops due to inadequate blood circulation. There are two major types of gangrene, known as wet gangrene and dry gangrene.

Signs and symptoms of gangrene can include

  • skin blisters,
  • blue skin from poor circulation,
  • dark scabs,
  • skin discoloration, or
  • skin ulcers.

Other symptoms can be dependent on the exact cause or the presence of the infection with wet gangrene. These can include fever or low blood pressure, creaky joints, pus or foul-smelling discharge, as well as other symptoms of infection.

Causes of gangrene

Dry gangrene results from conditions limit arterial blood flow such as arteriosclerosis, diabetes, smoking, trauma, or frostbite. Wet gangrene can result from the same causes as dry gangrene but is accompanied by the presence of an infection.

Other gangrene symptoms and signs

  • Blue Skin from Poor Circulation
  • Creaky Joints
  • Dark Scabs
  • Fever
  • Low Blood Pressure
  • Pus or Foul-Smelling Discharge
  • Skin Blisters
  • Skin Discoloration
  • Skin Ulcers

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Medically Reviewed on 3/27/2021
References
Jameson, J. Larry, et al. Harrison's Principles of Internal Medicine, 20th Ed. New York: McGraw-Hill Education, 2018.