Although most people know a person suffering from (pre-) diabetes, the population at large isn’t necessarily well informed about this disease and its impact. Diabetes Awareness Month was implemented to change this by educating the public. One of these rather unknown facts is that Diabetes is the main cause behind full or partial foot/lower leg amputations.
The link between Diabetes and foot care is called Peripheral Neuropathy. Diabetes damages nerves in the foot which causes pain, sensitivity to touch, tingling, and/or numbness. Approximately half of Diabetes patients are affected by these symptoms.
Another link is Peripheral Vascular Disease. This is a disorder that negatively impacts blood flow and circulation. Foot ulcers, wounds that won’t heal properly and infections can eventually result in amputations if not treated properly.
Annual checkups to look out for both Neuropathy and Vascular Disease are recommended. Once diagnosed, podiatrists can help manage symptoms by…
- Creating a pain management plan and prescribing medication
- Creating a therapy plan, including exercise routines
- Performing surgeries in extreme cases
Needless to say, your podiatrist can help you prevent any of these conditions in the first place, so don’t hesitate to make an appointment at 309-762-7919. You can also find further information here:
- Diabetes Awareness, APMA
- Foot Care, American Diabetes Association
- Peripheral Neuropathy, Mayo Clinic