Diabetic Foot Assessments
What is Diabetes?
Diabetes is systemic disease, which occurs when your body cannot produce enough insulin or cannot use insulin properly, resulting in is too much glucose (sugar) in your blood. There are three types of diabetes as listed below, all types can affect many parts of the body including the brain, heart, kidneys, eyes and the feet! As there are many areas that need to be checked & managed, diabetics require many practitioners help in managing this. Your podiatrist plays a key role in managing your foot and lower limb health.
The 3 types of Diabetes mentioned by Diabetes Australia are:
- Diabetes Type 1 – an auto-immune.
- Diabetes Type 2 – is a progressive condition in which the body becomes resistant to the normal effects of insulin and/or gradually loses the capacity to produce enough insulin in the pancreas.
- Gestational Diabetes – Gestational diabetes mellitus (sometimes referred to as GDM) is a form of diabetes that some women develop during pregnancy.
Diabetes & the feet
People with diabetes can experience foot complications due to the damage that high blood glucose levels causes to the nerves, blood vessels, skin and pressure distribution in the feet. There is an overall increased risk of developing foot problems such as poor circulation, nerve damage & altered sensation, dry cracked skin, digital deformities, ulcerations and infection, even leading to amputations.
Early intervention and regular screening is key
You can reduce the risk of any foot and leg problems with daily foot checks and regular diabetic foot assessment screenings People with diabetes should, as this will allow us to detect problems early on and prevent further complications.
Suggestions to help prevent problems include:
- Check your feet daily for signs of swelling, redness or other changes not normal to you
- Wash your feet daily and dry well
- Moisturise dry skin, especially cracked heels
- Check for signs of poor circulation, altered sensation and changes to skin integrity – your podiatrist can help identify these signs and symptoms with you.
If you are a diabetic make sure you book an appointment with one of our Podiatrists at Mount Lawley Physiotherapy and Podiatry for a complete assessment in addition to discussing the best treatment options for you.