Foot ulcers are a common complication of the “diabetic foot.” They allow a portal for infection to occur. Ulcers are caused by too much pressure to an area and the skin just “breaks down.” They can occur under corns and callouses. Healing can take weeks to months and it is imperative that pressure is removed from the area and good wound dressings are used.
- Wash feet daily. If skin is dry use an emollient but not between the toes.
- Inspect the feet daily. Use a mirror if you cannot see the bottoms.
- Look after your health. Lose weight, stop smoking and exercise regularly.
- Look after your feet. Cut toenails straight and never cut in to the corners. Use an emory board on sharp corners. Avoid going barefoot, even at home.
- Fitting of footwear is very important. Poorly fitting shoes are a common cause of problems in the feet in those with diabetes. Get measured each time you get a new pair. They should fit both length and width.
- See a podiatrist at least annually.
Podiatrists have an extremely important role to play in the prevention and management of complications of the foot in those with diabetes. Diabetics who are at risk for a problem should have that risk status assessed annually (more if risk is greater). When something does go wrong, see a podiatrist immediately.
Waiting “a few days to see what happens” before seeing someone may mean the difference between a good and poor outcome. The sooner treatment is started the better.
Our podiatrist treat diabetic feet and their complications every day. Such things as diabetic shoes, orthotics, wound care and surgery are a few of the many treatments available.
Contact our office to schedule an appointment for a diabetic foot evaluation.