Prevention is the best option

Health tips to prevent and control diabetic foot pathologies

Peu diabètic a Vall d'Hebron

According to the World Health Organization, diabetic foot is a group of syndromes that affect the feet of patient with diabetes mellitus (DM). In this illness, neuropathy (nerve damage), reduced blood flow and infection may cause destruction of tissue in the feet, which increases the chance of foot ulcers, infection and eventual need for limb amputation. 


What do you need to bear in mind if you have diabetic foot?

The complications of diabetes mellitus with high blood sugar and/or poor metabolic control may end up causing injuries to small vessels, such as diabetic retinopathy and diabetic nephropathy, or large vessels, such as diabetic arteriopathy.

This affectation also extends to protective sensitivity to injuries, and causes signs of peripheral nerve damage. It may present as sensory, motor or autonomic nerve damage.

The most frequent form is sensory/motor and one of the serious complications is Charcot foot and ankle. The combination of nerve and artery damage with foot infection may be considered a serious complication.

Although it may start more severely, the main symptoms of diabetes are:

  • Being very thirsty
  • Being very hungry
  • Needing to urinate a lot

And the symptoms that may indicate the beginning of diabetic foot are:

  • Loss of feeling in the feet
  • Pain at night
  • Intolerance to bed sheet friction  
  • Dry skin that may lead to cracking
  • Changes in the points of support on the feet
  • Appearance of hard skin and ulcers that may lead to amputation


Epidemiological data

Around 15% of patients diagnosed with diabetes get diabetic foot. Between 40% and 50% of diabetics will have an ulcer and 20% will need an amputation. More than 50% of non-traumatic leg amputations are performed in diabetics.


Diagnosis (normal general tests)

Clinical, analytical and screen for early detection.


Treatment (general)

Depending on symptoms and preventive.



Prevention of diabetic foot includes good metabolic control alongside a healthy lifestyle and professional foot care

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