Newly Diagnosed Diabetic
Being diagnosed with Diabetes is a life changing event. Many patients feel depressed at the thought of having to take tablets and inject themselves in addition to being restricted to what they can eat. However this does not have to be the case. In fact the opposite is true! Diabetes is one of those disorders that if you take control early on then you can delay or even prevent the onset of many problems.
Diabetes is associated with an increased chance of developing eye, heart, kidney and lower limb and foot problems. For more information on the above conditions please visit www.diabetes.org for more information.
At Podiatry Station we aim to eliminate the chances of any lower limb and foot problems developing by addressing any risk factors early on. Your treatment plan with us will always be tailored to prevent the onset of any complications rather than waiting for them to arise. We determine which risk category (low, medium or high) you fall into by carrying out a diabetic foot check on your feet. The diabetic foot check will assess both your blood and nerve supply to your feet.
Diabetic Foot Check – Blood Supply Assessment
The excess sugar within your bloodstream can reduce the volume of blood running through the arteries by reducing the diameter of the blood vessels. This happens when the extra sugar and fats build up into a plaque which then start to block the artery. This can lead to high blood pressure which is a risk factor for heart attacks and strokes.
Diabetic Foot Check -Nerve Assessment
Additionally, the excess sugar can wrap itself around the free nerve endings which can result in pins and needles sensation or can stops the nerves from functioning completely. This means that if you cause injury to your foot in any manner, you may not be aware of this immediately and as a result any trauma to the foot may go untreated. This is how infections and other problems like amputations can occur.
Our diabetic assessment assesses the possible damage done to your arteries and nerves in an easy and painless manner to give you peace of mind and allow you to keep a tight control on your diabetes. Using a machine called a Doppler we will let you listen to the blood flowing through your arteries. The Podiatrist will be able to tell you immediately if there are any areas of concerns.
A tuning fork and monofilament (instruments which are painless and easy to use) will easily determine how well the nerves are working.
Another benefit of having a diabetic assessment done at Podiatry Station is that you will get a detailed report at the end of your assessment which you can give to your GP or have for your own records. This will allow you to track your diabetic control to ensure nothing is getting worse.
Foot Ulcers / Areas of Breakdowns
Unfortunately diabetic patients are at a much higher risk of developing foot ulcerations and / or breakdowns.
An Ulcer is an open wound or sore that occurs in approximately 15% of diabetic patients. The most common area for this type of breakdown is on the soles of the feet. Diabetic patients are at a higher risk of developing ulcers because they can have problems with their blood supply and there nerves may not be functioning as they should be. This means that if a diabetic patient was to stand on a piece of glass they maybe unaware of the damage this has done to the soles of there feet. If this damage remains undected then this can develop into a serious infection which can go down as deep as the bone. When this happens it is know as osteomyelitis and always requires immediate antibiotics cover.
At Podiatry Station we hope that none of our patients ever develop an ulcer as with regular routine care and advice these can be easily avoidable. However, if you do develop an ulcer then we can help you.
The Podiatrist is trained to treat high risk diabetic foot ulcerations. Having worked within several NHS Diabetic Clinics she has a vast knowledge and understanding of how to resolve this issue. This often involves cutting away the infected tissue and padding up your foot to redistribute the weight to allow your foot to heal. Footwear advice and pressure relieving is also a major part of your treatment plan and will be discussed with you in great detail. You would be seen on a weekly basis until you have fully healed up.