Diabetic Foot Care

Man gently poking foot with needle

Take care of your feet and keep doing what you love

  In a diabetic foot you may notice a loss of sensation in the feet caused by damage to the nervous system. This can lead to unnoticed wounds or injuries in the foot, which can consequently lead to infections and potentially serious complications.

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See your podiatrist or doctor if you have any of the following symptoms:
  • Numbness
  • Coldness of the legs
  • Tingling or pins and needles sensation in the feet
  • Burning pains in the legs and feet, usually more noticeable in bed at night.
Woman holding her calf

You need to have your feet checked every year and more frequently if you are at risk of diabetic foot complication.


ABI-Pictures

With your podiatrist you can monitor and regulate:
  • Blood flow to the feet (circulation)
  • Feeling and reflexes (nerves)
  • Unusual foot shapes (including bunions, claw toes and hammer toes)
  • Toe nail pathology
  • Dryness, callouses, corns, cracks or infections.

Seek your podiatrist’s help to remove callouses or corns before they become ulcers as these can become infected, risking amputation.


In addition to regular checks ups with a podiatrist you should also wash, dry and check your feet every day. Check for redness, swelling, cuts, pus discharge, splinters or blisters. Be especially careful to look between toes, around your heels and nail edges.
Cut your toenails straight across and not into the corners. Moisturise your feet daily to avoid dry skin and never use over the counter corn plasters.

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Skin and Nail Problems

Toes nails with a fungal infection

Contact Woodlands Podiatry today for expert diagnosis and treatment planning for any of the following podiatric skin or nail complaints:

 
  • Callouses and Corns
  • Athletes Foot
  • Nail Problems
  • Cracked Heels
  • Verruca/Plantar Warts
 

Callouses and Corns

Callouses and corns are areas of skin that thicken, after exposure to repetitive forces, in order to protect the skin. When a callous develops a mass of dead cells in its centre, it becomes a corn. Corns generally occur on the toes and balls of the feet. They are generally symptoms of underlying problems and in some instances, an early warning sign of more complex foot problems. A callous or corn will require treatment when they become painful. If you suffer from diabetes, poor blood circulation, or loss of sensation (neuropathy), you should seek professional treatment even if there is no associated pain.  

Athletes Foot

Tinea pedis (Athletes Foot) is a skin condition which affects about 15% of the population. Symptoms include scaling and flaking, or softening and whitening of the skin on the feet and in particular between the toes. Secondary bacterial infection can lead to itchiness or unpleasant odour. Ensuring proper drying and aerating of the feet, with appropriate foot care routines and shoe selection can sometimes resolve the issue. Your podiatrist can prescribe an appropriate topical medicine that can give fast and effective results.  

Nail Problems

Healthy nails are pink, and grow constantly. A big toe nail takes up to 12 months to replace itself with a new nail. Unfortunately, nail problems are common and may be caused by warts, tumours under the nail plate, trauma and infection. Fungal nails may require topical paints and when necessary oral antifungal agents. Other conditions may cause nails to have the appearance of a fungal infection, such as Psoriasis. You should obtain a clear diagnosis and treatment options from your podiatrist.  

Cracked Heels

You may have hard or cracked skin on your heels, which can be painful or unsightly. Occasionally these cracks may become infected requiring antibiotics. In severe cases of hyperkeratosis (thickened skin) podiatry treatment can quickly and effectively remove the dry cracked skin. This can be followed up with the application of an appropriate heel balm, which can reduce the rate of reoccurrence.  

Verruca /Plantar Warts

A verruca or plantar wart is a small spot that develops on the sole of the foot with tiny black spots, which are tiny areas of pinpoint bleeding. If you notice a spot of this description, it may be a plantar wart and if it grows will become painful for you when standing or walking. Plantar warts may occur at all ages but they are most common among children 12-16 years of age. Plantar warts are viral tissue, contagious and may be spread in public showers or occur after minor skin trauma. If they become painful, begin to spread, or you require confirmation on the lesion, we can assist. We offer a range of treatment options.


Circulatory Assessments

Small white device that measures blood circulation.

For expert diagnosis you need cutting edge equipment backed up with the experience to interpret the results. Bi-directional Doppler ES-100V3 (ultrasound) helps diagnose circulation and blood flow disorders affecting your lower legs and feet. Connected to computer software this appliance also provides hard copy information for you or your treating medical practitioner.

 

If you have unexplained calf pain when walking, or suffer from poor circulation a non invasive Doppler assessment will accurately determine your blood flow to your feet and is an extremely useful tool in assessing diabetic patients. We are happy to discuss your concerns, liaising with your doctor when required.


The information on this page is of a general nature only and should not replace the advice of a qualified health professional.