Do you have a foot ulcer that won’t heal? While there can be many reasons for this, diabetes One is important. Therefore, if you notice any changes in the skin around the wound, discharge of fluid or pus, redness, pain, swelling, or discoloration, you should see a doctor as soon as possible.
What is a diabetic foot ulcer?
a diabetic foot ulcer Is a wound that usually occurs on your foot and is often seen in people with diabetes. This type of ulcer begins as a small bruise; A blister, like cracked and dry skin, or you may have a small cut or scrape. But, unlike other wounds, these do not heal over time and can become infected leading to some serious complications – which is why it is imperative to seek prompt treatment for diabetic foot ulcers.
The most important risk factor for developing a diabetic ulcer is diabetic peripheral neuropathy, a condition where the nerves, especially in your lower extremities, become damaged due to scarring. diabetes, Another reason for the development of diabetic foot ulcers is peripheral artery disease (PAD), a condition where there is a blockage in the arteries in the legs. Statistically, around 15 to 25 percent of people worldwide develop diabetic foot ulcers and about 50 percent of those develop because of PAD.
It is important to know that diabetic foot ulcers are preventable. Following a simple, daily foot care regimen can help prevent the onset of the condition.
Diabetic foot ulcer symptoms and diagnosis
Unfortunately, the signs and symptoms of diabetic foot ulcers are not always obvious and in some cases may be noticed only after the ulcer has become infected. One of the first symptoms of a diabetic foot ulcer is a leak or withdrawal of fluid from your body. feet Which can stain your socks or come out. Other early symptoms are swelling, redness, and a foul smell coming from the area where the discharge is seen. Your doctor will diagnose a foot ulcer by doing a physical exam, and if necessary, he or she may recommend one or more diagnostic tests to get more information about the injury. Finally, your doctor will likely identify the severity of the ulcer on a scale of 0 to 5 using the Wagner ulcer classification system.
Causes of diabetic foot ulcer
Diabetic foot ulcers usually occur for the following reasons:
Poor Spreadingespecially in your extremities
high blood sugar (hyperglycemia)
risk factors for diabetic foot ulcers
Everyone with diabetes is at risk for foot ulcers, but certain factors increase the risk of developing diabetic foot ulcers. they are:
poorly fitting shoes
poor feet hygiene
improper trimming of toenails or ingrown toenails
Past history of leg ulcers
peripheral artery disease
Diabetic foot ulcer treatment
Treatment of diabetic foot ulcers depends on the severity of the ulcer. In less severe cases, your doctor may clean the wound, removing any dead skin over the area and bandage it with a sterile dressing. In more severe cases your doctor may need to perform surgery to treat the infection.
prevention of foot ulcers
One of the most important aspects of diabetic foot ulcers is preventing their onset. The first step to prevent this condition is to take care of your feet daily. This includes checking your feet regularly. do not walk bare feetEven indoors if you’re getting neuropathy
wearing comfortable shoes that do not pinch or cut your feet, dry your feet thoroughly, especially between the toes, after bathing or washing them, cut your nails carefully and most importantly Talk to your doctor if there is an injury to your feet.
You can also ask your doctor to examine your feet for any signs of injury when you move regularly. diabetes Counseling.
These steps are even more important if you are at higher than normal risk of diabetic foot ulcers.
do something and don’t
* Wear the right footwear. Your shoes should have a good insole, a thick or protective sole, and be covered around the toes.
* don’t wear tight shoes Because they can pinch or hurt your feet. Another important aspect is to always check the inside of your shoes for any foreign bodies that could hurt you if you wear them.
*Get your feet checked regularly by your doctor for any signs of ulcers.
* Cut your nails carefully. If you have ingrown nails that can damage your feet, talk to your doctor and see a professional to help treat the condition.
Wear shoes even at home, as they can protect your feet and prevent any injuries.
*Avoid hot compresses as it can cause blisters which can turn into ulcers.
* Do not sit with your legs bent as this reduces blood flow to your legs and lower half of your legs.
Ultimately, prevention is the best way to avoid the onset of diabetic foot ulcers. So, now is the time to take care of your feet and keep an eye out for any kind of ulcers. Treat your feet like you treat your face.
(Dr. Ghanshyam Goel is a Consultant Diabetologist and Diabetic Foot Specialist, ILS Hospital, Salt Lake, Kolkata,