If you have diabetes, your lifetime risk of developing a diabetic foot ulcer is relatively high — between 15 and 34% — but dangerous foot wounds are preventable when you practice proper diabetic foot care. At Foot & Ankle Affiliates, Eric Abrams, DPM, offers comprehensive diabetic foot care, from teaching you how to take care of your feet and recognizing when to get medical care, to providing long-term wound care and specialized orthotics to prevent pressure sores. To learn more about diabetic foot care, call one of the offices in Eatontown and Toms River, New Jersey, or schedule an appointment online.
When diabetes isn’t controlled with diet or medication, blood sugar levels can rise higher than normal. Over time, high blood sugar damages small blood vessels and nerves, a combination of problems that can lead to diabetic foot ulcers.
Diabetic nerve damage, a condition called peripheral neuropathy, affects sensation in your feet. You may lose sensation or feel tingling or burning. As a result, you won’t feel problems such as cuts, bruises, or abrasions from shoes that rub your skin.
When your small blood vessels are damaged, blood flow in your feet is disrupted. This lack of circulation makes it impossible for small cuts and abrasions to heal, so small wounds quickly progress to form open ulcers.
Ulcers alone are a health risk because they’re very hard to heal and easily become infected. When you have diabetes, your risk is magnified because diabetes interferes with your body’s natural ability to fight infections.
The best way to prevent diabetic foot ulcers is to get in the habit of examining, cleaning, and moisturizing your feet every day. If you see any of the following problems, call Foot & Ankle Affiliates to schedule a diabetic foot care appointment:
Even if you don’t develop signs of a problem, you should schedule a routine foot examination with Dr. Abrams to ensure your feet stay healthy.
Dr. Abrams offers comprehensive diabetic foot care, including preventive exams and services such as:
The team at Foot & Ankle Affiliates also participates in Medicare’s diabetic shoe program. Poor-fitting shoes are one of the primary causes of diabetic foot ulcers, because they rub against your skin and create high pressure areas that turn into wounds.
If you’re diagnosed with diabetes and you have severe diabetic foot disease, Medicare Part B covers 80% of the cost of custom-molded shoes and extra-depth shoes. The insurance also covers two or three pairs of inserts for your customized shoes, as well as shoe modification instead of orthotics.
Cuts, red spots, calluses, and all foot problems in patients with diabetes should be professionally treated by Dr. Abrams. To schedule an appointment, call Foot & Ankle Affiliates or request an appointment online.