The Residents: “My first day in a wound care center”

Photo by cottonbro on

My first day in a wound care center:

After completing all of my medical (non-podiatry) rotations in year 1 of residency, I thought I had seen it all.

To my own surprise,

I was wrong.

As a 2nd year resident at a prominent hospital in New Orleans, I stepped foot into my first podiatry rotation: a lower extremity wound care rotation. This was where I saw some of the worst wounds ever.

On my first day, we saw an elderly patient who was brought in for an initial assessment for a hallux wound with possible infection. As the resident, I was the first one to evaluate the situation.

As soon as I entered the room, there was an odor I will never forget. It smelled like rotting skin. When I sat down to inspect the great toe, I noticed that the toenail was lifted, loose, and moving slightly.

I used forceps to lift the nail plate and found….


I exposed 20-30 maggots that had been residing under the nail. Even the bone was exposed. I also saw several other maggots crawling under the skin of the forefoot.

Needless to say, this was one of the most interesting/scariest cases I had at the time and something I will never forget.

Story by Dr. I.A.

All our authors names have been kept anonymous for this special edition. We hope you enjoy these great stories by podiatry residents.

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