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Get to know foot problems that are often experienced by diabetics

High blood sugar levels over a long period of time can cause complications, including foot problems. Possible diabetes complications range from infection to leg amputation. Check out the full review below.

Get to know foot problems that are often experienced by diabetics

Diabetes and Foot Problems

Diabetes that is not well controlled can cause nerve damage and poor blood circulation. This condition can even cause foot problems such as ulcers, blisters, pain, and infection.

In some cases, the damage to the feet can be severe. Infection of the feet can spread, then damage other organs and even be life threatening. Severe infection may necessitate leg amputation.

Although the majority of people with diabetes do not experience severe foot complications, diabetes remains the leading cause of amputations.

Diabetes is generally caused by a lack of insulin (usually type 1 diabetes) or insulin resistance (usually type 2 diabetes).

Insulin is an important hormone that helps cells absorb sugar from the blood to use as energy.

If this process does not go well, sugar remains circulating in the blood, causing health problems.

High sugar levels in the blood for a long time can cause nerve damage and circulation problems, which can eventually hurt the feet.

If you have foot problems due to diabetes, immediately consult a general practitioner to prevent more serious complications.

Also Read: Causes and Ways to Overcome Ulcers in Diabetics

Foot Problems in Diabetics

If you have diabetes, too much glucose, aka sugar in your blood for a long time can cause some serious complications, including foot problems.

Here are some foot problems that people with diabetes may experience, including:

1. Diabetic Neuropathy

If the nerves in your feet and legs are damaged, you may not feel heat, cold or pain. In the medical world this condition is called diabetic neuropathy.

If you don’t feel sore or sore feet due to neuropathy, these sores can get worse and become infected. The leg muscles may not function properly because the nerves to the muscles are damaged.

Doing so can cause your feet to align properly and put too much pressure on one side of the foot.

2. Scald

Diabetes can increase your risk of blisters in a number of ways. First, diabetic neuropathy can make it difficult to tell when footwear isn’t enough. It can also change the way a person moves, increasing the risk of blisters.

Diabetics can too experience a condition called bullous diabetes, characterized by the spontaneous formation of blisters.

The blisters can become infected, cause pain, and increase the risk of the infection spreading throughout the body.

3. Diabetic ulcers

Approximately 7% of people with peripheral neuropathy develop diabetic foot ulcers each year. The combination of poor blood circulation and nerve damage often leaves a person unaware of their condition until it is severe.

Weak blood circulation can also slow healing. If left untreated, ulcers can damage the feet and become infected.

Ulcers can also make walking very painful. Wearing shoes and socks may exacerbate symptoms.

4. Foot Infection

Diabetic ulcers can become infected, especially if the person with diabetes doesn’t take care of them or keep them clean. This infection can spread to the bloodstream, causing damage to organs and endangering life .

People with diabetes can also experience gangrene, which is tissue death and can lead to leg amputation.

Foot infections can damage the basic structures of the foot, including the bones. Poor blood circulation will also damage the underlying structures. This condition can change the shape of the foot, causing pain and difficulty walking.

5. Leg Amputation

In order to prevent the infection from spreading and minimize damage to the foot area, the doctor may recommend amputation, which can be a toe, foot, or part of a leg.

Also Read: Understanding the Effects of Diabetes on Brain Health

How to Overcome Problems in Diabetic Foot

Basically, treatment for ulcers and infections on the feet of people with diabetes must involve a doctor. The following are common treatments that can be done, including:

  • Clean the wound.
  • Draining fluid or pus from wounds on the feet.
  • Cleaning or cutting dead or infected tissue (debridement).
  • Applying special dressings and ointments to absorb excess fluid, protect the wound, and help it heal.
  • Using a wheelchair or crutches to reduce the weight of the sore leg.
  • Taking oral or intravenous (IV) antibiotics to manage and eliminate the infection.

Ultimately, treatment depends on how severe the infection is in the foot, hospitalization may be recommended to better monitor the condition.

  1. Anonymous. Diabetic Foot. (Accessed January 19, 2023)
  2. Anonymous. 2021. Diabetic Foot Problems. (Accessed January 19, 2023)
  3. Anonymous. 2021. Diabetes-Related Foot Conditions. (Accessed January 19, 2023)
  4. Fletcher, Jenna. 2022. How can diabetes affect the feet?. (Accessed January 19, 2023)

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