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Baylor, Scott & White Plano


Top Tips for Foot Care for Diabetics

by Dr. David R. Northcutt
Dr. David Northcutt is a podiatrist and foot and ankle surgeon at Dallas Podiatry Works in TX.
My name is Dr. David Northcutt and I’m here to discuss diabetic foot care. When you have diabetes, there are several things you need to watch for and to be careful of in regards to your foot health.

To start with, once you have a diagnosis of diabetes, you should participate in a diabetes education program to help educate yourself or at least prevent complications from having diabetes. People with diabetes can develop serious foot problems due to a decrease in the blood flow to the feet, known as peripheral vascular disease, or peripheral arterial disease.

This loss of blood flow can result in tissue damage and even gangrene. Periodic foot evaluations by a physician can help you catch signs and symptoms of this early, to try to prevent further tissue damage. Loss of sensation in the feet, due to nerve damage, can also occur, which is known as neuropathy. Neuropathy can result in burning, and other pains in the feet, even a complete loss of sensation in the feet, ankles, and sometimes even the legs. This can lead to limbs or infections you may not feel, or may not be aware of until it may be too late.

You should look at all areas of your feet every day, particularly in between the toes. You should notify your doctor if you see new areas of redness, swelling, discoloration, any new pain in your calves or feet while walking, any signs of ingrown toenails, any puncture wounds, or any corns or calluses, particularly if they are discolored.

Some of the good points to keep in mind is to always dry between your toes. You should avoid use of chemical corn removers, and you should always check inside your shoes for any foreign objects before you put them on. You should always wear shoes and please do not walk barefoot on potentially hot surfaces like beaches or sidewalks in the summer.

One last thing that diabetics should not do is use heating pads or place your feet next to a heater to warm them, as this can result in severe burns that you may not feel. In regards to footwear, it’s important to wear shoes that fit your feet.

It is best to be fitted for and try on new shoes towards the end of the day. Your feet should be measured each time you purchase new shoes. Typically, our feet elongate and widen as we age, so what used to be a size 7, normal width, may end up being a size 8 wide.

In summary, the most important aspect of diabetic foot care is to check your feet daily as this helps to catch problems early, which always makes them easier to treat.

If you have questions regarding diabetic foot care, or have noticed any changes to your feet, please schedule an appointment with us here at Dallas Podiatry Works. All of us here would love to be a part of your health care team.

"I did 3 EPAT treatments and it gave me tremendous relief from my plantar fasciitis. I highly recommend this for anyone who is dealing with PF. Also, the physical therapist Dr. Brook sent me too is fantastic. I am definitely on the mend and so glad I did EPAT."- All H. 5 star all h
"Dr Northcutt is a fantastic physician. My first surgery with him (although painful), went very well. A couple of issues (with his staff) needed to be corrected, I appreciated his calm and professional demeanor and he corrected those issues promptly. He sets the bar high (the mark of a great physician), and that is the key reason why I'm coming back to him to correct my other foot. I would highly recommend him."- She B. 5 star
"The staff at Dallas Podiatry Works could not have been more courteous, helpful, and professional in doing their job. They made me feel comfortable when I was there, which is certainly appreciated. They answered all the questions that I had and just made each visit the most pleasurable that it could be. I would highly recommend them to anyone needing this type of care."- Joseph B. 5 star
"My experience was a good one from pre-op to post -op. I saw the doctor right before my surgery.He explained the process to me and my husband. The recovery nurse was great. It was neither crowded or chaotic as some day surgery centers. My foot is doing well as I follow instructions. I look forward to my one week progress visit!"- Patricia T.5 star
"I had dealt with a painful foot problem for five months and had seen three different Doctors before seeing an article in D Magazine about Dr. Joel Brook. Dr. Brook took one look at my foot, explained the causes for my pain and set me up on a successful treatment plan. He is very knowledgeable, thorough and exhibits a caring attitude. I highly recommend him."- Ginger W. 5 star
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