Diabetes is a chronic disease characterized by a decrease in insulin hormone in the body and a consequent increase in blood sugar levels. In patients whose blood sugar level rises uncontrollably and the disease is not controlled, damage may occur in many organs, especially the eyes and kidney, in the long term. The clinical picture called diabetic foot is one of the conditions that can be seen in the course of this disease.
Diabetic foot, which can be seen once in a quarter of diabetic patients, is the first reason for admission to the hospital for one out of every 5 diabetes patients. In other words, undiagnosed patients continue their lives with high blood sugar levels without being aware of their diabetes; They may apply to the hospital due to the development of diabetic foot.
An uncontrolled high level of blood sugar primarily affects the nerves and small vessels. With the onset of damage to the nerves in the feet and hands, especially in the wrist area and beyond, the feeling of touch and pain disappears. In addition to the dryness and small skin cracks that occur in diabetic patients, continuous shoe trauma or minor impact traumas cannot be fully felt due to this nerve damage. For this reason, problems that can be prevented with small precautions, especially in the early period, can turn into big problems in the long term.
In diabetic patients, vascular occlusions that occur at the ankle level and beyond are the biggest cause of nutritional problems in the feet. Although it does not cause serious problems in the initial stages, symptoms begin to appear as the disease progresses. Healing of spontaneous or trauma wounds on the feet becomes more difficult due to vascular occlusion. However, if these wounds become inflamed, serious medical processes may be encountered that can progress to various levels of loss of the leg.
The first symptoms seen in diabetic foot patients are numbness, electric shock sensation and numbness in the feet. However, cold feet are one of the most common complaints. Due to the decrease in the feeling of pain, the possibility of being exposed to traumas and the formation of wounds as a result increases. In addition to all these, the decrease in flexibility in the foot muscles causes deformities in the feet and, accordingly, deterioration of the load distribution while standing. This process is another obstacle to the healing of wounds that may occur on the foot.
Keeping blood sugar levels within normal limits minimizes the risk of diabetic foot problems. For this reason, maintaining a diet, using medications without interruption, and not neglecting exercise are the sine qua non of every diabetic patient. Taking care of the foot care of diabetic patients is the first and most basic precaution that can be taken to prevent the processes that may occur. Preventing the feet from drying out, wearing comfortable shoes suitable for the shape of the foot, and using orthopedic insoles when necessary, reduces the possibility of problems. However, washing the feet twice a day and drying them very well after washing are the first steps to prevent the development of inflammation in the wounds that may occur. Since the formation of calluses on the feet can be the first sign of a moist process, it is very important not to remove the calluses.
If problems such as numbness, dryness, cracks have started in the feet in any way, it is necessary to apply to centers that regularly apply diabetic foot care. However, the wound on the foot for any reason should be taken seriously and the necessary treatment should be started in a clinic specialized in diabetic foot.
I wish you a healthy and happy week.