Updated: Dec 31, 2019
Podiatry for people with diabetes is one of the most overlooked aspects of diabetes management. Many people with diabetes are unaware that they need to take special care of their feet and visit a podiatrist at least once a year to prevent problems.
Why podiatry is so important to people with diabetes?
Diabetes can cause nerve damage known as peripheral neuropathy.
Diabetes affects the circulation, and poor circulation can affect how the body heals.
People with diabetes are more prone to infection.
Diabetes complications include open sores that can lead to amputation.
Diabetes can affect the joints and cause pain.
Here are some things you can expect during a Podiatry appointment:
Circulation Test: Checking circulation in both feet is important because it lets you understand some of your symptoms and can identify if you are at risk for open wounds. Just like pulses found in the wrists, there are also pulses in the feet. The best way to check them is with a doppler. A doppler is a small hand held unit that is placed over your 2 foot pulses and allows the podiatrist to hear your blood flow.
Sensation Test: Checking feet sensation is important so that you understand why sometimes you can’t feel normally such as numbness or an inability to detect between hot and cold water. It is also an indication of how progressed your diabetes is as well as how controlled your blood sugar is. Patients with diabetes may have damage to the nerves in their feet. The damage is usually caused by build-up of the sugar in the nerves which may lead to lack of sensation also called neuropathy. A 10mg plastic filament is used to check sensation in both feet.
Footwear Advice: Education is given about wearing appropriate shoes as this will reduce your risk of open wounds. Proper shoes also help your balance.
Skin Integrity: This is important as patients with diabetes who for instance have bunions or other bone deformities such as claw or hammer toes or poor skin integrity are at higher risk of developing wounds.
Alignment: A gait analysis is completed because it determines if you have areas of high pressure when you walk and can also be part of the explanation for joint pain from the feet up to the back.
Book your podiatry assessment by calling 902-755-9675 and share this post with anyone you know who has diabetes!