Diabetic Foot Care

Diabetes is probably the most damaging disease that a patient can encounter with regards to their feet. Diabetes comes in two basic types; type 1 and type 2. Type 1 is usually associated with juvenile diabetes and is usually a hereditary type of disease. Type 2, commonly referred to as adult onset diabetes, is usually characterized by elevated blood sugars by people who are overweight and have not attended to their diet as they should.

Diabetes can be controlled with medications, diet and exercise. But a serious condition occurs if the sugars are out of control and a lesion (sore or ulcer) develops on the plantar (bottom) of the foot. The goal and treatment of diabetics with foot ulcers is to relieve the pressure, prevent infection and ultimately ensure the patient does not lose their limb. It is important that a patient with a foot ulcer consult their podiatrist, vascular surgeon, orthopedist or family doctor.

Many tests are employed to maintain diabetic good health, including blood tests, MRI’s, x-rays, and constant supervision of the patient. Neuropathy is the number one disease that affects a diabetic that leads to loss of limb. Neuropathy is the loss of sensation, and the patient is not aware that he/she is developing sores on the bottom of his/her foot. It is the podiatrist who usually treats these lesions. He or she will treat the lesions by debridement (peeling away of the ulceration), padding to relieve pressures of the ulceration, fabrication of orthotics, a diabetic shoe, antibiotic medications, foot soaks and good diabetic hygiene.

If you suspect that you may have a diabetic ulcer, immediate medical attention is necessary.

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