Diseases & Conditions

Recovering from a non-healing wound starts with a better understanding of your condition. At Westlake Hospital, we strive to stay up-to-date on the causes of chronic wounds — and to share that information with the community. Below, we provide information on common causes of chronic wounds that we may treat at our wound care centers. For more information about your symptoms, call (708) 681-3000 to connect with one of our doctors or ​click the physician finder button below.

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BONE INFECTIONS

Osteomyelitis is a bone infection. It can occur in individuals of all ages and is the result of a bacterial infection that reaches the bones.

DIABETIC FOOT ULCERS

Diabetes increases the chances of an individual developing an ulcer or sore on the feet. Diabetic sores are often painless and a common cause of hospitalization in diabetics. 

FAILING SKIN AND MUSCLE GRAFTS

Muscle and skin graft surgeries are not always successful. When there is a limited supply of blood to the area, the graft may fail and patients may require a second surgery

GANGRENE

Gangrene is the result of infection or lack of blood flow to a particular region of the body. This leads to dead tissue.

IMMUNOSUPPRESSIVE DISORDER WOUNDS

These wounds are associated with a number of immunosuppressive disorders including diabetes, HIV and cancer. These wounds are often a complication from having a compromised immune system.

LOWER LEG ULCERS

Ulcers are opened wounds or sores that will not heal or heal and continue to return. Lower leg ulcers may or may not be painful and are typically found on the inner portion of the leg, just above the ankle.

PERIPHERAL ARTERY DISEASE

PAD is usually caused by a build-up or deposits of plaque in the arteries outside of the heart and brain. As plaque accumulate​s, the arterial passage narrows, restricting blood flow to the afflicted area. This condition is called atherosclerosis. The plaque may harden, or become brittle. It can break off and become a clot, and further narrow or block the artery. In the coronary artery, a blood clot can cause a heart attack; in the carotid artery, it may cause a stroke.

POST-OPERATIVE INFECTIONS

One type of surgical complication is a post-operative infection. Post-op infections can be the result of longer surgeries, wounds that become dirty, being overweight or in older adults.

RADIATION BURNS

Radiation burns are damage to the skin or other tissues caused by exposure to radiation. Patients undergoing radiation therapy for cancer may experience these types of burns.

SKIN TEARS AND LACERATIONS

A laceration occurs when the skin is cut. Lacerations tend to be deep and often require medical care to repair them — such as stitches.

SLOW- OR NON-HEALING SURGICAL WOUNDS

Not all surgical wounds heal quickly or completely. The most common reason for this is infection to the site of surgery.

Let Westlake Hospital connect you with a physician in your area

Call (708) 681-3000 or use our physician search tool to be connected to a wound care specialist who can answer your questions. You can also read more about diseases and conditions in our health library.