Diabetes and feet – Diabetic foot complications

Complications of feet in diabetes

Though diabetic foot problems are quite common, it is often neglected. This is because the complex mechanism that causes foot problems is not easily noticed by patients.

Being the farthest extremities of the body, we often neglect our feet. It bears our weight and we subject them to pressure, friction, and wear and tear. Moreover, due to lack of awareness on proper foot care in diabetes many complications can eventually end up in hospitalization, disability, and even foot amputation.

Diabetes and feet – Complications if feet in diabetes

People with diabetes suffer a range of diabetes complications of the feet. These include:

  • Foot corns
  • Calluses
  • Plantar warts
  • Bunions
  • Diabetic blisters of the feet
  • Hammertoe
  • Ingrown nails
  • Athlete’s foot
  • Cellulitis
  • Diabetic neuropathy
  • Diabetic foot ulcers
  • Diabetic foot infections
  • Diabetic foot

Most of these complications do occur even in people who do not have diabetes; however, people with diabetes are more prone to many foot problems due to three causes. These include:

  • Injury to the nerves leading to diabetic neuropathy
  • Lack of blood supply to the tissues of the feet due to ischemic changes in diabetes
  • Compromised immunity which is characteristic of diabetes

Apart from these factors, deformities of the feet, pressure, friction, and improper foot care in diabetes lead to many infections, ulcers, and other problems that can lead to diabetic foot and ultimately foot amputation.

Lack of sensation due to diabetic neuropathy leads to an inability to perceive foot pain, heat, and pressure. This aggravates issues as people with diabetes would not realize early on that they have fissures, blisters, or cracks in their feet.

That is why they are advised to check their feet periodically with the help of a mirror. Also, periodical foot examinations along with other diabetes screening tests should be done as per the advice of a diabetes doctor or a podiatrist.