Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

Overview Incidence Risk Factors Symptoms Evaluation Treatment debridement specialist Home Care diet pain and fever warning signs Prevention Outlook Complications Underlying Cause Anatomy

Diabetic Skin Ulcer Anatomy

To better understand decubitus ulcer, it helps to understand the anatomy of the skin.

The skin contains three main layers:

  • Epidermis:
    • The superficial layer that makes up the surface of the skin
    • It is composed of skin cells and can be divided into 5 layers based on cell type.
    • The top layer of the epidermis, the stratum corneum, is made of dead, flat skin cells that shed about every 2 weeks.
    • The thickness of the epidermis varies, according to location: it is very thick over the soles of the feet, and very thin over the ears.
  • Dermis:
    • Lies beneath the epidermis
    • Also varies in thickness depending on the location of the skin. It is .3 mm on the eyelid and 3.0 mm on the back.
    • The dermis is composed of 2 layers that contain a connective tissue called collagen
    • The dermis contains blood vessels, nerves, sweat glands, and hair follicles.
    • The number of structures in the dermis varies, according to location.
    • The dermis under the arms contains more sweat glands and hair follicles than the dermis on the back.
  • Subcutaneous layer:
    • Mainly fat and connective tissue.
    • Contains blood vessels and nerves.

Continue to Diabetic Skin Ulcer

Last Updated: Dec 9, 2010 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
Copyright DSHI Systems, Inc. Powered by: FreeMD - Your Virtual Doctor

PubMed Diabetic Skin Ulcer References
  1. Brem H, Tomic-Canic M, et al. Healing of elderly patients with diabetic foot ulcers, venous stasis ulcers, and pressure ulcers. Surg Technol Int. 2003;11:161-7. [12931298]
  2. Duimel-Peeters IG, Halfens RJ, Berger MP, Snoeckx LH. The effects of massage as a method to prevent pressure ulcers. A review of the literature. Ostomy Wound Manage. 2005 Apr;51(4):70-80. [16089061]
  3. Ratliff CR; WOCN. WOCN's evidence-based pressure ulcer guideline. Adv Skin Wound Care. 2005 May;18(4):204-8. [15920372]
FreeMD is provided for information purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for evaluation and treatment by a physician. Please review our terms of use.