Direct to an emergency department for:

  • Sepsis or acutely unwell due to foot infection
  • Tissue loss with absent pulses
  • Suspected acute limb ischaemia
  • Rapidly deteriorating ulceration or necrosis
  • Suspected infection from a foreign body in the foot
  • Rapidly deteriorating ulceration or necrosis
  • Suspected Charcot’s neuroarthropathy (e.g. unilateral, red, hot, swollen, possibly aching foot).

Criteria for referral to public hospital specialist clinic services

Not applicable; patients should be referred to a multidisciplinary high-risk foot service.

Information to be included in the referral

Information that must be provided

Not applicable.

Provide if available

Not applicable.

Additional comments

The Summary and referral information lists the information that should be included in a referral request.

Patients with any of the following should be referred to a high-risk foot service:

  • deep ulcers (probe to tendon, joint or bone)
  • ulcers not reducing in size after 4 weeks despite appropriate treatment
  • the absence of foot pulses
  • ascending cellulitis

Note: there are vascular statewide referral criteria for High-risk foot ulcers and Non-healing or chronic lower leg ulcers. If the person has been diagnosed with diabetes and another service is not available a referral to endocrinology may be appropriate.

Where appropriate and available the referral may be directed to an alternative specialist clinic or service.

Referral to a public hospital is not appropriate for

Not applicable.