Many healthcare providers are quick to pull the trigger on surgery when a diabetic has a bone infection - but could antibiotics be just as effective?

According to Diabetes Health, osteomyelitis (a bone infection) is the most common foot infection seen in people with diabetes. It accounts for up to 50% of severe infections in diagnosed diabetics.

Controversial results from a recent study found that antibiotics were in fact the best course of action in this population. Let's be honest, surgery obviously comes with its own set of risks and benefits.

Study outcomes surprisingly found a negligible difference between the surgical and non-surgical group (antibiotic treated). Of course, in some cases depending on the person's clinical profile, it may be determined that surgery is in his or her best interest.

Is my foot infected?

If you think you have a foot infection, see a care provider as soon as possible. Infections can worsen quickly in people with diabetes.

Symptoms of infection may include:

  • Fever
  • Red, sore, painful, swollen, draining or ulcerative areas on your feet
  • Areas that aren't healing
  • Blood sugars that are very difficult to control
  • You may not feel pain if you have neuropathy (nerve damage)

To learn more about this topic:
How to Prevent Diabetes Foot Damage
Your Diabetic Feet: Tips to Avoid Neuropathy and Other Foot Complications
What is Diabetic Neuropathy?