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Foot symptoms

Foot symptoms

If you have diabetes one of the major problems you might experience are foot problems. Diabetic foot problems occur in 50% of the people with diabetes and they are a common complication of diabetes mellitus and they can lead to morbidity and mortality. Foot disease is the leading cause of non-traumatic lower-limb amputation in the developed world.

Calluses

If you have diabetes, you are more likely to suffer from calluses. This is because there are high-pressure areas under the foot. Too much callus may mean that you might need therapeutic shoes or inlays. Calluses get very thick, break down, and turn into ulcers (open sores), if not trimmed. Never try to cut calluses or corns yourself; this can lead to ulcers and infection. Always let your health care provider cut your calluses.
 
Never remove calluses and corns with chemical agents. These products can burn your skin. Using a pumice stone every day will help keep calluses under control. It is best to use the pumice stone on wet skin. Put on lotion right after you use the pumice stone.

Ulcers are a serious problem

People with diabetes often suffer from ulcers and about 15% of diabetics suffer from severe foot ulcers. If you use insulin you are at higher risk to get an ulcer. However, also people with diabetes-related kidney, eye, and heart disease form a risk group. Being overweight and the use of alcohol and tobacco also play an important role in the development of foot ulcers.

Vascular ulcers and diabetic foot ulcers are a serious health problem which affects a large number of people with diabetes, creating a major challenge for health professionals. Diabetic foot disease is a result of three main pathologies that can occur singly or in combination. These are: peripheral neuropathy, peripheral arterial disease and infection. Consequences of these pathologies are ulceration, Charcot foot, painful neuropathy, gangrene and amputation.

Preventive foot care is important

Because people with diabetes are very prone to foot problems it is very important to maintain sufficient preventive foot care. You should wash your feet twice a day, with a mild soap (DiaClin BodyWash) and lukewarm water. Always dry your feet thoroughly, especially between the toes. Inspect your feet carefully for cuts, bruises, sores, or changes to the toenails. When you discover wounds, you should immediately go see a doctor or diabetes specialist.