YOUR HEALTH: A shocking way to treat diabetic foot problems

SAN ANTONIO, Texas – Thousands of diabetics undergo amputation because wounds, mostly on feet and legs, just won't heal.

Up until now, hyperbaric oxygen was the primary option, but it is expensive and time-consuming.

It's tough for patients who suffers from significant open wounds, triggered by the battle with the disease.

"This is a good alternative for patients who are not healing," explained Dr. Jayesh Shah, medical director of the Northeast Baptist Wound Care Center.

"You basically give 360 shocks for a minute. And, it lasts two to four minutes, so it's not really complicated, it's pretty easy."

"Basically, it helps you with regeneration of the tissues. It helps you with new vascularization to create new blood vessels mainly in diabetic microvascular disease. It basically gives 360 shocks a minute. The treatment usually last two to four minutes and it's not really complicated. It's pretty easy."  - Dr. Jayesh Shah

DermaPACE helps the body create new tissue and blood vessels caused by peripheral artery disease, a hallmark of diabetes.

And according to long-time diabetic Jerry Fernandez, who has already had his first treatment, it's a quicker, faster alternative to the hyperbaric oxygen chamber.

"The new treatment that they have, it only lasts about five minutes, total, for setups and all that," said Fernandez.

"You go into the hyperbaric chamber and you will do it for two hours. They just kinda rub it around on your foot, and it's done."

For now, Dr. Shah is one of a handful of physicians nationwide clinically evaluating the dermaPACE.

"It's completely brand-new technology, it's kind of breakthrough compared to what we had so far in wound care."

DermaPACE is being evaluated in six states and the cost per treatment has not been announced.

The hyperbaric treatments run $500 to $1,000.

If this story has impacted your life or prompted you or someone you know to seek or change treatments, please let us know by contacting Jim Mertens at jim.mertens@wqad.com or Marjorie Bekaert Thomas at mthomas@ivanhoe.com.

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