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From Auckland, New Zealand:

My dad is 61, and has had type 2 diabetes for about 18 years. He has not taken good care of himself (despite being a pharmacist!), and six months ago, he had a massive heart attack ('silent' and pain free). He had massive complications, all related to his diabetes condition, was on Life Support for six weeks, and hospitalized for four and one-half months. As a result of his prolonged bedridden state, he developed a sore on his heel, which has never healed and is constantly prone to infection. The doctors operated, cutting away down to the bone. Now, they say that amputation below the knee is a real possibility within the next two weeks. To help clear the non-healing infection, would the use of medicinal maggots be of any use? Or is this too far gone now? I feel so angry and upset.


I would not consider medical maggots superior to other conventional forms of wound care. One of the problems of healing a persistent ulcer is the ability to get blood flow to the extremity. I'm sure your father's physician knows this. Unless his overall health is severely compromised, these decisions are made in a conservative, no-haste manner.


Original posting 18 Oct 2000
Posted to Complications


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