By Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care
November 02, 2016
Category: Diabetic Foot Care
Tags: neuropathy  

According to the American Diabetes Association, about 29 million Americans have diabetes. At Affiliated Foot & Ankle Care one of the areas of major podiatric concern that we work with our diabetic patients to identify and treat is neuropathy. Nervous system damage affects well over half of patients with diabetes, causing a loss of sensation in the feet and hands. Your nerves are what relay messages to your brain about pain, touch and temperature. When these pathways are damaged, patients are less likely to perceive injuries, which in the case of diabetic patients, can lead to dangerous ulcers and even amputation.  Because another condition associated with diabetes is reduced circulation, healing of an injury can take a very long time and lead to serious infections. There are ways to help minimize nerve damage if neuropathy is caught in its initial stages. That’s why it’s important to recognize the symptoms of nerve damage. These include:

  • Tingling or pins and needles sensation in the feet
  • Unsteady on your feet; difficulty feeling your feet when you walk
  • Stabbing or shooting pain in your feet
  • You have gotten a blister or cut on your foot and have not felt it
  • Your feet get very cold or very hot
  • Numbness
  • Feet and legs hurt at night
  • Muscle weakness in feet and legs
  • Feet appear to have changed shape

Be Proactive in Preventing Nerve Damage

If you have noticed any of the above symptoms, you need to make an appointment with one of our board certified foot and ankle surgeons, Dr. Varun Gujral or Dr. Nrupa Shah as soon as possible. The podiatrist will examine your feet and has a number of ways of testing and assessing the nerve pathways to and from your feet.

As a patient with diabetes, and particularly if you are having trouble with lack of feeling in your feet, you should check your feet daily for signs of injuries or changes. Regularly scheduled visits with your podiatrist should also be part of your care regimen. If you haven’t already discussed regular podiatric care with the foot doctor or you have questions about your feet and diabetes, contact our Edison, Monroe or Monmouth Junction office today.