Posts for tag: Diabetic Foot Care
People with diabetes are prone to foot problems, often developing from a combination of poor circulation and nerve damage. Damage to the nerves in the legs and feet diminishes skin sensation, making it difficult to detect or notice pain or temperature changes. A minor sore or scrape on your foot may get infected simply because you don't know it is there. A decrease in blood flow makes it difficult for these injuries to heal. And when a wound isn't healing, it's at risk for infection. Left untreated, minor foot injuries can result in ulceration and even amputation.
Foot Care for Diabetics
Simple daily foot care can help prevent serious health problems associated with diabetes.
We recommend the following tips for keeping your feet healthy and preventing foot complications:
- Wash feet daily. Keep feet clean with mild soap and lukewarm water, and dry thoroughly.
- Moisturize. Moisturize daily to keep dry skin from cracking, and avoid putting lotion between your toes as this may cause infection.
- Trim your toenails carefully. Cut straight across, avoiding the corners; visit our office for assistance
- Never treat corns or calluses on your own. Visit your podiatrist for treatment.
- Protect your feet from hot and cold.
- Keep the blood flowing in your feet and legs. Elevate your feet when sitting, don't sit cross-legged, and stay active.
- Inspect your feet every day. Check your feet for cuts, redness, swelling and nail problems. Contact our practice if you notice anything unusual, even the slightest change.
- Avoid smoking. Smoking restricts blood flow in the feet
- Wear comfortable, supportive shoes and never walk barefoot
- Visit our practice for regular exams. Seeing a podiatrist at our office regularly can help prevent diabetic foot problems.
At our practice, we understand that living with diabetes can be challenging. Let's discuss simple ways you can reduce your risk of foot injuries. We'll work with you to create a treatment plan that fits your lifestyle and gets you back on your feet so you can enjoy the things you love. Remember to inspect your feet every day. If you detect an injury, no matter how small, come in for an exam right away.
Diabetes is one of the most common metabolic diseases affecting Americans. The American Diabetes Association reports 23.6 million people in the US have Diabetes Mellitus which is 7.8% of the population. Common complications which can occur from diabetes include vision problems, kidney disease and loss of feeling in the hands and feet as well as wounds to the bottom of the feet.
Frequent medical visits with your podiatrist are imperative to the prevention of lower extremity complications related to diabetes. Foot deformities like hammertoes can form as a result of diabetes causing the patient to be at high-risk for the development of wounds to the feet. Untreated calluses or wounds to the feet often lead to infection, which frequently requires hospitalization and even amputation. Preventative measures taken by your podiatrist include the prescription of diabetic shoes and treatment of digital deformities, either with conservative treatment or surgical intervention. Dry skin can also create fissuring which can lead to infection. This also may be treated by a daily regimen as directed by your Podiatrist. Diabetic patients should perform a daily foot evaluation in their home to identify the development of ulcerations or calluses. The sooner a diabetic patient can receive medical attention for foot related issues, the better his or her chance is for a favorable treatment outcome.
Below are some statistics that should be very eye opening to any diabetic patient and stress the importance for both tight blood sugar control and frequent visits with their health care providers.
Patients with Diabetes Mellitus:
- Males are two times more likely to suffer heart attack
- Females are four times more likely to suffer heart attack
- Risk of stroke is doubled for both men and women
- 45% of diabetics will experience neuropathy (painful burning in the feet and loss of feeling)
- 15-20% will develop a lower extremity wound of which 15% will require amputation
- If you have a below the knee amputation there is a 40% chance of amputation to the other leg
- If you have a below the knee amputation, you have a 50% mortality rate in 5 yrs