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What is a Foot Ulcer?

An ulcer is a medical term for an open sore where the skin has broken down revealing the tissue underneath.

Ulcers are usually caused by pressure, friction or trauma and for this reason are often found at the base of a corn or area of callous.

So in order to understand what caused an ulcer we must first understand what caused the preceeding callous and corns:

•             Corns and callouses develop when there is recurring pressure on an area of skin

•             Over time your skin forms a extra layer of tough material (keratin) in order to protect itself from tearing or blistering.

•             When there is ongoing pressure on the corn or callous the skin beneath can ulcerate.


Other common causes of Foot Ulcers:

•             Ill fitting footwear

•             Walking barefoot

•             Poor foot hygiene

•             Dry skin

•             Poor circulation or sensation

•             Foot deformity


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Foot ulcer image i.jpg

Your guide to Ulcer footcare:

1.            If you have diabetes: Control your Blood Glucose Levels

2.            See your Podiatrist and / or Doctor: At least every week

3.            If you have any danger signs of infection see your Doctor or Podiatrist:




Q & A

  • I have an ulcer. What happens now?

The podiatrist will examine your feet to identify the cause of your ulcer, and will advice you on its care. They will also provide specialist wound care treatments specific to your wound type and site.

  • How are foot ulcers treated?

  1. Your ulcer will be cleared of debris and infected material, and any surrounding hard skin will be paired away (debrided). This is generally a pain free process.

  2. Following debridement it is normal for your ulcer to appear bigger or may bleed, but because it will now be cleaner, with the unhealthy overlying or surrounding skin removed, the healing process can begin sooner.

  3. Your podiatrist will decide upon, and apply a suitable dressing to your ulcer.

  4. You may be given a pad / insole / device to offload the area.

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If you have any questions please feel free to ask. We are here to work with you and your Doctor to best care for your feet.

Useful Links:


Hospitals & Medical Centers

  • St Columcilles Hospital:

       (01) 282 5800

  • St Vincent's Hospital:

       (01) 221 4000​

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