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You are here : 3-RX.com > Medical Encyclopedia > Diseases and Conditions > Gangrene: Treatment & Monitoring


Alternate Names : GAS Gangrene

Gangrene | Symptoms & Signs | Diagnosis & Tests | Prevention & Expectations | Treatment & Monitoring

What are the treatments for the infection?

Gangrene must be treated right away. If the tissues or muscles show any signs of swelling, intravenous antibiotics will be needed to treat the infection. Blood thinners to prevent blood clots may also be prescribed. Pain medications are prescribed to treat discomfort.

A person may need to be in the hospital to receive intravenous antibiotics, intravenous fluids, and monitoring of the gangrene. Bed rest is essential in early stages of treatment. Often the affected tissues, organ, or limbs must be amputated so that infection doesn't spread. Physical therapy may also be needed, especially if amputation occurred.

What are the side effects of the treatments?

Side effects depend on the treatments used. For instance, antibiotics may cause allergic reactions and stomach upset. Surgery carries a risk of bleeding, infection, and allergic reactions to anesthesia.

What happens after treatment for the infection?

Sometimes no further treatment is needed once the cause of the gangrene is identified and corrected. For more serious disease or injury, treatment may continue and a person may have further instructions to follow. If a person had surgery, he or she may need to take it easy for several days to several weeks and need follow up care. Physical therapy and daily strengthening exercises may be needed.

How is the infection monitored?

Any new or worsening symptoms should be reported to the healthcare provider.

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Gangrene: Prevention & Expectations


Author: Eileen McLaughlin, RN, BSN
Reviewer: Melissa Sanders, PharmD
Date Reviewed: 07/24/01

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