Diabetes and the Higher Risk of Surgery

Kozzi-doctor-in-surgery-room-different-angle-420-X-308Having diabetes means that you are at a higher risk for just about anything and that includes the dangers that come along with surgery. You may find that it will take longer for the wound to heal or it won’t heal the correct way. Infections are also a higher risk for diabetics as well. Going into the hospital for any type of surgery can be stressful for anyone which means that your blood sugar and pressure levels may go through the roof. Before, during and after your surgery it is possible that you may need to make adjustments in your medication(s) to help keep your levels where they are supposed to be at all times. Your doctor will be able to set up a plan for you.

Peripheral arterial disease or PAD is common in those with diabetes when it comes to surgery. This causes the wounds to not heal correctly or quickly due to the blood flow not being able to reach the wound. Leg pain is also common with PAD and legs and feet can also become extremely cold because of the blood not flowing correctly. If this becomes too severe it is possible that the patient may require surgery in order to open up blood vessels for blood that is full of oxygen to get to the legs and feet. This will help you to feel warm and normal once again.

Infections also become a greater concern for those that are diabetic as well. For someone that keeps an eye on their levels and they are able to maintain them, their risks are a lot lower than someone that has irregular blood sugar levels. Of course during your stay in the hospital the staff will be able to monitor your blood sugar levels closely and also be able to administer insulin or other medications if it is needed. If in the case that an infection becomes too serious and the wound is not going to be able to heal it is possible that the patient may need further surgery for the infection in order to provide proper treatment. Often antibiotic medications are prescribed for these and may be given intravenously. This is done in combination with additional surgery.

High blood sugar levels are common in diabetic patients who have surgery. The levels tend to rise when the patient becomes stressed (of course this is normal for anyone that is going under the knife) and this can cause hyperglycemia. This can lead to other medical conditions including diabetic ketoacidosis. Hyperglycemia is also a leading cause of infections in the wound and slows healing as well. You will also find that it can lead to many other complications so it is crucial that a diabetic patient has their blood sugar levels monitored during their entire stay at the hospital. Once they are home, keeping tabs on the levels can mean the difference between a slow healthy healing process, or returning to the hospital for further surgery and treatment options.

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