Meet Gladys, a mom of two boys who enjoys spending time with her family and having fun dancing, singing karaoke, playing bingo, and watching movies. Gladys is dedicated to maintaining her healthy, active lifestyle and goes for routine check-ups given that she is a diabetic with heart disease.
On a recent routine foot check-up, an infection was discovered, and Gladys was admitted to the hospital. She says, “I got this infection from renovating my bathroom. I had a scratch on my big toe and two months later, I ended up with a big infection.” The physician who would end up treating her would end up helping to change her life.
Dusty R. Haverly, DPM of OAA’s Podiatry Specialty, was the physician who would provide care for Gladys’ foot. Upon meeting Gladys and examining her foot, Dr. Haverly realized the severity of the infection and sat with Gladys to thoroughly discuss her care. He explains, “I felt Gladys had a good understanding of her condition, but she did not realize the severity of the potential outcomes, including an amputation of her foot or leg. One of my priorities is educating my patients on the diagnosis and risk factors, along with potential outcomes.”
Gladys was thankful for Dr. Haverly’s compassion and the time he took to explain everything to her. She says, “My interactions with Dr. Haverly were like something I have never experienced with any other doctor before. He never beat around the bush and was always honest and straight to the point. He has true compassion and is very caring and helpful.”
Dr. Haverly would further discuss with Gladys her course of treatment for the foot infection. He explains, “The prescribed course of treatment would be daily wound care with weekly follow-ups and wound debridements. Later in the process, surgery was required to remove a bone in her toe that became infected after the initial wound. This healed up without complication, and the infection was successfully removed.” Gladys did not have to have her foot amputated because of Dr. Haverly’s thorough care throughout the treatment process and Gladys’ dedication to her routine check-ups.
Gladys continued to progress through healing with minimal difficulty, which is a credit to the team effort of her and Dr. Haverly. Gladys says, “Dr. Haverly saved me from amputation or any other severe problems. I truly appreciate everything he has done for me, especially saving my foot. His knowledge in podiatry makes him the best and most sincere doctor.”
Gladys felt comfortable throughout the treatment plan because of the trust she developed with Dr. Haverly and with his staff. She says, “His staff always finds a way to make me smile any time I go in for any of my appointments. They are not staff; in my eyes, they are family. There is just no one better than Dr. Haverly and his staff.”
Dr. Haverly is happy to be able to help Gladys maintain her active lifestyle and explains, “I provided the education on her condition and risk factors, as well as methods she could use through her daily living to minimize her risks; however, it was ultimately Gladys’ compliance with the treatment plan and her understanding of the need for communication with me that lead to her success in treatment.” Thanks to this superb team effort, Dr. Haverly was able to save Gladys’ foot.
Gladys may not have had the same outcome had she not gone for a routine foot check-up. Neuropathy, which is common among diabetes patients, is nerve damage that causes loss of sensitivity in the hands and feet. A patient may have a small wound but not be able to feel it, so it continues to worsen and become more severe.
Dr. Haverly notes the importance of routine check-ups and says, “Gladys’ condition that leads to her hospitalization is far too common in anyone with neuropathy. Regardless of the cause of neuropathy, there is some degree of risk for foot ulceration and infection which increases the potential for surgery, including amputation. Early recognition through daily foot visual inspections and immediate evaluation and treatment by a podiatrist when a problem is spotted leads to much better outcomes and success in treatment.”
Dr. Haverly enjoys all aspects of podiatric medicine and has a special interest in limb salvage and wound care. He makes it his priority to effectively communicate a patient's condition and treatment options and work with them to increase the quality of life and independence.
Learn more about Dr. Haverly and OAA’s Podiatry Specialty. To schedule an appointment, call OAA at 610-973-6200 or fill out the “Request an Appointment” form on our website.