Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Patients with diabetes and foot problems

As diabetes comes to dominate the nation's health system, you can count on the number of foot problems that require medical treatment Podiatrist to increase as well.

The American Diabetes Association advises that 23.6 million children and adults in the United States had diabetes in 2007, almost eight percent of the population of the United States and a number that increases every year as obesity and related health problems increased. In addition, the Association reported that 17.9 million people were diagnosed with diabetes that year, while 5.7 million people have been diagnosed. The Association says that 57 million are pre-diabetic. Consequence of diabetes that is not as well known in the general population is the foot pain and foot problems that can often occur in diabetic patients.

Many diabetics are afflicted with a variety of problems in the feet, severe pain numbness, inability to feel no pain in the bottom of the foot. (We know that a diabetic who walked barefoot for the back yard of his house in the desert in the summer, only to discover when he returned inside and he had burned the skin on the bottom of his feet.) He had not heard such a thing!)

There are generally four different types of foot pain, the most common being when the nerves in your foot or on the foot's skin have been affected. This is called peripheral neuropathy and it takes the form of three different sub neuropathies, autonomic, motor and sensory.

Sensory is the most common and its symptoms are such that even gently pulling on your socks or just touching your feet can cause excruciating pain. Sensory neuropathy also can give you stabbing pain, burning, tingling and numbness.

If you find you have a lot of foot pain, first check your blood sugar levels and make sure they are where they should be.

If you suffer from autonomic neuropathy you may find that your diabetes has altered how and when you sweat, so you may find your feet are dry or cracked and that they have build up large calluses and thickened nails.

Motor neuropathy affects your muscles; they become achy and weak and while your feet muscles probably will be the last affected in this case, you may find your balance is off or shaky.

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