DIABETES AND FEET
- Foot problems are caused by neuropathy, poor circulation or a combination of both.
- The loss of feeling that comes with neuropathy is especially dangerous, as you may not be aware of cuts, blisters and bruises.
- The loss of sensation can change the way you walk or can damage bones and joints.
- Delays in treatment can lead to serious problems.
Foot problems include:
- Changes in sensation from severe pain to numbness
- Increased likelihood of infection (bacterial and fungal)
- Slow wound healing
- Deformation of the joints
- If you have foot problems, consult a doctor right away. Early diagnosis can make a dramatic difference.
- Treatment for infection includes antibiotics and regular wound dressing.
- Impaired circulation sometimes can be helped by blood vessel bypass.
- Unfortunately, in advanced cases of poor circulation and uncontrolled infection, amputation may be necessary
Tips to Take Care of Your Feet
- Get regular foot exams
- Not go barefoot
- Do not use sharp objects or corn/wart removers
- Protect your feet from hot and cold.
- Keep the blood flowing to your feet by exercise or walk
- Stop smoking
- Wash, dry and inspect your feet each day. Specially, between your toes
- Wear shoes and socks that fit all the time.
- Make sure there is nothing sharp or irritating in your shoes
- Report corns, calluses and injuries that don’t heal to your doctor
- Cut toenails straight across
- Control your blood glucose
When should I see my doctor about foot problems?
Visit your doctor right away if you have
- a cut, blister, or bruise on your foot that does not start to heal after a few days
- skin on your foot that becomes red, warm, or painful—signs of a possible infection
- a callus with dried blood inside of it, which often can be the first sign of a wound under the callus
- a foot infection that becomes black and smelly—signs you might have gangrene