Diabetic Foot Care in Des Moines & Mason City
If you have diabetes, there's no such thing as a minor wound to the foot. Even a small foot sore can turn into an ulcer that, without proper diabetic foot treatment, can lead to amputation. The rate of amputation for patients with diabetes is 10 times higher than for those who don't have the disease. For that reason, all diabetic patients should see a podiatrist for a foot wellness check on a regular basis.
Diabetics are prone to nerve damage, or neuropathy, in the feet putting them at a much higher risk for foot complications. When not treated properly, these complications can lead to the loss of feeling in your feet enabling injuries or small wounds and cuts to go unnoticed. Our foot and ankle specialists in Des Moines and Mason City can help you protect your feet from more severe conditions caused by diabetes, such as foot ulcers.
Common Diabetic Foot Wounds
Our skilled podiatrists for diabetes treat a variety of common foot wounds diabetic patients are particularly susceptible to. If you begin to notice any of the conditions below, we encourage you to schedule an appointment with a podiatrist as early as possible to prevent your diabetic foot wound from worsening. Some of the most common diabetic foot wounds our specialists have seen include:
Why Are Diabetics At-Risk for Foot Wounds?
People with diabetes are at increased risk for complications from wound healing because diabetes decreases blood flow, so injuries are slower to heal than in people who do not have the disease. Also, many people with diabetes also have neuropathy — reduced sensation in their hands or feet — which means they don't necessarily notice an injury right away.
Feet are often at higher risk for diabetic wounds because feet just take more of a beating in our daily lives than hands do, and we don't look at them as often, so it's harder to spot a wound. This is why proper foot care to prevent these common foot problems is absolutely necessary for patients with diabetes.
The Importance of Diabetic Foot Treatment From a Skilled Podiatrist
Professional foot care is especially important for diabetic patients as their condition commonly leads to foot problems due to the loss of blood flow and feeling in the feet. Diabetic foot wounds can be avoided if you know how to properly care for your feet. By regularly examining your feet for wounds, you can act quickly at the first sign of a problem. Our foot and ankle specialists strongly recommend that you see your podiatrist for diabetes at least once every year. Your doctor can detect foot problems early on, enabling them to treat your condition before it worsens. A podiatrist will also teach you steps and practices you can implement in your daily life at home to prevent any further foot problems from developing.
How Do You Treat Diabetic Feet?
Depending on your diabetic foot condition, treatment can vary. Diabetic foot care near you will offer both nonsurgical and surgical treatment options. Your podiatrist for diabetes will first attempt to treat your condition using nonsurgical methods such as cleaning the affected area and offering protection options for your feet. If those don’t work, surgery may be required. Surgery can include removing dead tissue, amputation (from single toes to the lower half of the leg), an arterial bypass for peripheral vascular disease, and endovascular surgery.
When it comes to treating a diabetic foot ulcer, it is important that you stay off your feet. This will allow for some relief on the affected area as pressure can cause ulcers to expand as well as further infection. A podiatrist for diabetes can remove the ulcer with a debridement procedure. Infections require immediate treatment. Most diabetic patients fully recover from foot ulcers when the wound is cleaned and taken care of properly. Even after a full recovery, our specialists strongly recommend practicing the items listed below to prevent future complications.
Preventing Diabetic Foot Wounds
It is vital that diabetic patients take care of their feet each and every day. Implementing these practices in your everyday life at home can help you avoid the common diabetic foot wounds listed above:
Wash your feet everyday using lukewarm water and soap
Examine your feet for sores on a regular basis
Keep the skin on your feet moisturized to avoid irritation
Avoid open-toe shoes
Because feeling can be lost in the feet due to diabetes, always protect your feet from extreme hot or cold temperatures
Try to maintain blood flow to your feet by elevating them when sitting or wiggling your toes throughout the day
See your podiatrist for diabetes on a regular basis for checkups
Choose Iowa’s Leading Podiatrists at EVFAS
Iowa’s leading podiatrists at East Village Foot & Ankle use state-of-the-art technologies along with the latest procedures to ensure you get the best outcome possible. If you’re a diabetic patient and experience any of the symptoms or complications discussed above, we strongly encourage you to contact our foot and ankle clinic
for a higher standard of diabetic foot care near you.