Diabetes will reduce blood circulation and damage the nerves to the feet. A majority of people having diabetes will have higher chances of diabetes-related foot attacks. Delay in treatment can lead to gangrene and amputation. It is essential to detect foot problems early to avoid complications. Those with diabetes should have their feet examined at least once a year.
Cases of type 1 and type 2 diabetes are surging among people in the country. It has become a growing matter of concern for the experts. Diabetes is not only a major cause of blindness, kidney failure, heart attacks, stroke but even lower limb amputation leading to higher morbidity and mortality rates. Foot problems are prevalent in people having diabetes.
“If one has diabetic foot attack, one can complain of an acutely inflamed foot with skin and tissue necrosis. One may get cuts and blisters that can cause ulcers leading to gangrene (dead, black tissue), and loss of limb. Red flags of poor circulation to the feet may be pain or cramps in the back of the legs while walking. It is seen in 60% males, 30 % females and 10 % youngsters. The cases of diabetic foot attacks have gone up in the last 5 years in males due to lack of physical activity, sedentary lifestyle, junk food consumption. Diabetic foot attack is seen in those more than 20 years with uncontrolled diabetes with diabetic foot. I have seen more than 20 cases a year with diabetic foot among which 12 are giving good results and 8 cases still under treatment to save the foot. With the help of timely surgical intervention, all infected tissue will be tackled alongside antibiotic therapy to save the limb and improve the patient’s chances of survival. Post-operative, the patient will also require proper wound care under the guidance of an expert” said Dr. Vishwajeet Chavan, Orthopedic Surgeon, Apollo Spectra, Pune.
Dr. Shyam Thakkar, Orthopaedic Surgeon, Lokmanya Hospital Pune Said, “Diabetes is a silent killer and is seen in the majority of people. Those with diabetes will have to pay special attention to their feet as they will encounter foot problems. There is reduced blood supply and delayed wound healing of the feet. Gangrene, foot ulcers, and amputations have a huge impact on quality of life. The signs of diabetic foot are numbness in feet, swelling, colour changes in skin of leg, thickening or callus over sole of foot, ulcers or wound which is not improving. The number of diabetic foot patients is increasing. About 500 to 600 patients have been registered in the last one year. Go for annual foot check-ups to monitor numbness, pain, discomfort, or any abnormal pus discharge. It is also the need of the hour to create awareness regarding diabetes foot and encourage people to manage their blood sugar levels from time to time, and stay healthy.”
Those with diabetes can exercise on a daily basis to take care of their feet. Try to wash your feet properly with water and feel each and every corner of foot especially the spaces between the toes. Avoid smoking that can invite circulation problems, take care of the wounds, maintain an optimum weight, manage diabetes, moisturize feet and wear appropriate shoes,” concluded Dr. Thakkar.