Many causes may result in gangrene or tissue death. These include the following:
- A lack of blood supply to the muscle in question – The blood is vital for the survival of tissues in the human body. It provides critical oxygen and nutrients to all body parts and is also responsible for giving the immune system vital antibodies necessary to fight infections. Thus without an adequate blood supply, the tissue cells won’t survive for long, resulting in tissue death.
- Infection – Some bacterial infections may also attack and kill the muscle resulting in gangrene if left untreated.
- Certain health conditions – People with certain health conditions such as diabetes or atherosclerosis are far more suspect of gangrene. The diabetic gangrene treatment may also present several unique challenges.
- Traumatic injuries – Gangrene may also be caused by various traumatic injuries, including but not limited to gunshot wounds, crushing injuries from car crashes, etc. These can cause open wounds, which can serve as the passage for the bacteria into the body. If the bacteria manage infected tissues and remain untreated, they may result in gangrene.
Six Types of gangrene
Based on there, gangrene is of the following types:
Dry gangrene, as its name suggests, refers to those types of gangrene that involve shriveled and dry, which may look brown, purplish, blueish, or black. Dry gangrene might develop very slowly, and it most commonly occurs in people with diabetes or some blood vessel disease, such as atherosclerosis.
Wet gangrene is a kind that is wet, as its name suggests. It gets wet if bacteria may have infected the tissue. Some common symptoms of this type of gangrene are swelling, blistering, and a damp appearance. They often develop from severe burns, injuries, or frostbites. People with diabetes may unknowingly injure a toe or foot, resulting in wet gangrene.
The reader must note that wet gregarines must be treated very quickly as they spread quickly and can be very harmful, even lethal.
Gas gangrene is another type of gangrene that can affect deep muscle tissue. It may not show any symptoms on your skin at first. Still, as the condition progresses, your skin may grow paler or even show other colors such as purple, gray, red, etc., which might also appear bubbly and make a cracking sound whenever one press it – that happens because of the gas within the tissue.
This time of gangrene is most commonly caused by a specific bacteria called Clostridium perfringens. Bacteria gather in an injury or a surgical wound that doesn’t have a blood supply. The bacterial infection can produce toxins that release gas and causes tissue death.
The reader must note that, much like wet gangrene, gas gangrene is also a life-threatening condition, and one should consult a healthcare provider when one sees such a condition immediately.
Internal gangrene affects one or more of the internal organs, such as the intestines, gallbladder, or appendix. It is caused by interrupted or blocked blood flow to some internal organs. If it’s left untreated, internal gangrene too can be lethal.
Fournier’s gangrene is a gangrene that involves genitals and usually affects men though women can get it too. The cause is an infection in the urinary area or urinary tract.
- Meleney’s gangrene or progressive bacterial synergistic gangrene
Meleney’s gangrene or progressive bacterial synergistic gangrene is a rare type customarily caused by a complication of surgery. It results in painful skin lesions a week or two after the surgery.