Diabetes and Foot Problems

Elevated blood glucose levels can cause foot problems.
A doctor tests for feeling on a patient's foot.
A foot with ulcers due to the loss of adequate blood circulation to the feet.
A diabetes check box.
Athlete's foot is a fungus that causes itching, redness, and cracking.
Nails infected with a fungus may become discolored, thick and brittle, and may separate from the rest of the nail.
Calluses are a build-up of hard skin, usually on the underside of the foot caused by an uneven distribution of weight.
Corns are a build-up of hard skin near a bony area of a toe or between toes.
Blisters can form when your shoes rub the same spot on your foot.
Bunions form when the big toe angles toward the second toe and becomes red and callused (where the big toe joins the rest of the foot), usually due to wearing shoes with narrow toes.
Dry skin can crack, allowing germs to enter.
An infected foot ulceration requiring surgery to drain the underlying abscess.
A hammertoe is a toe that is bent because of a weakened muscle that makes the tendons shorter, causing the toes to curl under the feet.
Ingrown toenails occur when the edges of the nail grow into the skin causing redness, swelling, pain, drainage, and infection.
Plantar warts look like calluses on the ball of the foot or on the heel and are caused by a virus that infects the outer layer of skin.
Learn how to prevent foot problems if you have diabetes.
Take care of your diabetes by keeping your blood glucose level within the range recommended by your doctor.
Check and examine your feet every day.
Wash your feet every day and keep them nice and moisturized by applying lotion.
Smooth corns and calluses with an emery board or pumice stone.
Check and trim your toenails once a week.
Wear socks or stockings and proper shoes at all times.
Put your feet up to maintain good blood flow.
Smoking can make blood flow problems worse.
Visit your doctor or podiatrist for regular check-ups on your feet, even if you don't have any foot problems.
A nurse receives a call for a patient appointment.

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Reviewed by John A. Seibel, MD on Wednesday, May 11, 2016

How Diabetes Can Affect Your Feet

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