Diabetic Foot Care

Diabetic foot care is crucial in preventing diabetic complications such as amputation. A diabetic foot assessment conducted at My Podiatrist Canberra is a comprehensive examination that aims to evaluate the overall health of the feet and identify any potential issues associated with diabetes. Here’s an overview of what is typically involved in a diabetic foot assessment at My Podiatrist Canberra

  • Medical History Review: We begin by discussing the patient’s medical history, including details about their diabetes management, any existing foot problems, and previous foot-related complications.
  • Nerve Assessment: Assessment of nerve function is crucial for diabetic patients, as diabetes can lead to neuropathy (nerve damage). We use various tests, such as a monofilament test and tuning fork, to assess sensation and detect any loss of feeling in the feet.
  • Blood Flow Assessment: Checking blood flow to the feet is essential. We assess pulses in the feet and lower extremities by using a portable ultrasound called a doppler to identify potential vascular issues.
  • Visual Inspection of the Feet: The podiatrist visually examines the feet, looking for any signs of redness, swelling, calluses, corns, deformities, or skin abnormalities. Changes in skin integrity, such as cuts, wounds, or ulcers, are carefully inspected.
  • Footwear Assessment: Your footwear is reviewed to ensure it provides proper support and fits well. 
  • Education and Self-Care Guidance: We provide education on proper foot care practices. This includes daily foot inspections, appropriate footwear choices, and strategies for preventing complications. Patients are informed about the importance of maintaining good blood sugar control.
  • Follow-Up Recommendations: At My Podiatrist Canberra we establish a follow-up schedule to monitor your foot health over time. Regular follow-up appointments are essential for ongoing assessment, preventive care, and early intervention if any issues arise.

Why is foot care important for diabetic patients?

Foot care is crucial for diabetic patients because diabetes can lead to nerve damage (neuropathy) and poor circulation, increasing the risk of foot complications. Regular foot care helps prevent infections, ulcers, and other issues that could lead to more severe complications such as amputation. It has been estimated that 1 in 4 people with diabetes will have a toe or limb amputated in their lifetime. 

How often should I check my feet for problems?

Diabetic patients should check their feet daily for any signs of redness, swelling, cuts, blisters, or changes in temperature. Regular self-examinations help detect issues early, reducing the risk of complications.

What are the signs of a diabetic foot infection, and when should I seek medical attention?

Signs of infection include redness, swelling, warmth, and pus. If you notice any of these, especially if accompanied by a fever, seek immediate medical attention. Prompt treatment is essential to prevent the infection from worsening.

Can I trim my own toenails, or should I see a professional?

It’s generally recommended for diabetic patients to have a podiatrist trim their toenails every 6-10 weeks. If you are deemed low risk, you may be allowed to cut yourself however you will have to follow proper techniques and avoid cutting too close to the skin to prevent injuries.

How can I prevent diabetic neuropathy?

While neuropathy can’t always be prevented, maintaining good blood sugar control, adopting a healthy lifestyle, and attending regular check-ups with healthcare professionals can help manage and reduce the risk of neuropathic complications.

How can I improve circulation in my feet as a diabetic?

Regular exercise, maintaining a healthy weight, avoiding tobacco, and managing blood sugar levels are key factors in improving and maintaining good circulation in the feet. 

A diabetic foot assessment  at My Podiatrist Canberra is a proactive measure to prevent and detect complications associated with diabetes. Book a Diabetic Appointment to ensure optimal diabetic outcomes.