Diabetic Foot Care
When it comes to health and wellness, feet are generally neglected. They are overloaded, overworked, and get minimum attention despite carrying the entire weight of the body. Hiding under a neat pair of shoes, feet are generally least thought of. But when it comes to diabetes, feet call out for all that attention they had previously missed.
Diabetic foot problems are very common, but they remain neglected in the larger scheme until there is a need for aggressive management – to avoid diabetic foot ulcers and perhaps amputation.
Diabetes-related foot problems are a major cause for decreased mobility, hospitalization, and even amputation of the foot. Diabetes causes changes in the joints, blood vessels, and nerves of the feet. This makes them prone to a host of conditions that impair the quality of life of a person.
Common Diabetic Foot Problems
Our feet are prone to a wide variety of problems including:
- Heel problems
- Nerve problems
- Problems of the bones, muscles, ligaments, and tendons
- Flat foot
- Infections and ulcers
Most amputations of the feet that are not caused due trauma are due to peripheral vascular disease, diabetic neuropathy, and diabetic foot disease. People with diabetes have to take special care in order to avoid diabetes complications of the feet.
Screening of Diabetic Foot
Examination of the foot would include the following (to be done on both the feet)
- Monofilament testing – for testing touch pressure sensation.
- Palpation of pulses in the foot Vibration testing – to recognize any neuropathic ulcer
- Temperature of the foot gives an important clue of impaired circulation or otherwise
- ABI & Doppler of the foot
- Inspection of the footwear, for material, kind of footwear (flip-flops, shoe, sneaker, sports shoes, etc.) fit and patterns