Why You Should Keep Doctor Appointments during COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic makes staying physically and mentally healthy more difficult. Many people now second-guess their daily choices and longer-term decisions often feel more complicated. We are facing increasingly heightened stress and anxiety as a result of the pandemic.

But there is one important step you should take to get through the pandemic as healthy as possible. Keep your regular doctor appointments, including your peripheral artery disease (PAD) and wound care checkups.

Physicians are taking extra precautions

There are many ways that doctors are keeping appointments as safe as possible:

  • Taking the temperature of every staff member and visitor
  • Screening the staff for COVID-19
  • Decreasing wait times
  • Ensuring all staff members and visitors wear masks
  • Offering telehealth appointments

While many people are nervous coming in for their first appointment, Dr. Thomas Davis, an interventionalist cardiologist for Detroit’s St. John’s Hospital, says that they feel comfortable once they’re there.

“It’s so important to keep getting basic foot care and seeing your doctors,” says Dr. Davis. “Amputation is a real threat. It’s a bigger threat than COVID-19 when patients don’t keep their PAD and wound appointments and the disease progresses.”

What can happen if you skip doctor appointments

“Without treatment, small wounds can become gangrene. Gangrene can lead to partial amputation,” says Dr. Davis. “Even after a wound heals, I encourage patients to keep seeing their podiatrists and primary care physicians because calluses and pressure points can turn into wounds.”

For more information

Learn other ways to avoid amputation on our Take a Stand Against Amputation® website. If you need help finding a doctor or getting a second opinion, use CSI’s Find a Doctor tool to help explore the variety of PAD treatment options available.