Diabetes is a condition which can place an individual at greater risk of developing serious foot problems. The problems are related to the systemic effect of diabetes on the lower limb which include:
- Decreased circulation to the feet (reduced blood supply)
Diabetes can affect the large arteries of the body by causing them to become narrower. If the large arteries of the leg are narrower less blood reaches the feet which is a condition called peripheral vascular disease. Less blood means healing rates for wounds, cuts, abrasions is longer and therefore increases the risk of infections and makes it more difficult for the body to fight those infections.
- Decreased sensory nerve function in the feet (reduced feeling in the feet)
Diabetes can affect the peripheral nerves of the body, in particular the sensory or feeling nerves. In a condition called peripheral neuropathy the nerves in the feet are less able to sense damage to the feet. If a person with peripheral neuropathy cuts the bottom of the foot they may not be aware of it and continue to walk on the injured area. The area may become increasingly damaged and infected with no warning signs that there is a problem.
The Athlone Foot Clinic provides comprehensive treatment and monitoring of diabetic feet.
Annual foot check-ups – A diabetic foot assessment occurs every 12 months or more often if required. This is a vascular and neurological assessment that enables us to determine your foot status and potential risks for you. Vascular testing includes doppler readings and other cursory tests. Neurological tests used are the standard in diabetic neurological foot assessments.
Regular foot maintenance – Once your foot status is determined, regular foot care may be conducted by us on an ongoing basis. This can include cutting of nails to prevent cuts and ingrown nail problems, removal and debridement of problem corns or callus and other routine foot advice. For many, these services are claimable under your health Insurance.
We diagnose and treat the following diabetes related foot problem. Call the Athlone based Foot Clinic on 090 6400141 for an appointment with our Podiatrist today.