- By: Dr. Crystal Gonzalez, DPM
Diabetes is the leading cause of heart disease, strokes, eye problems, blindness and kidney disease in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), 25.8 million Americans are affected by diabetes. Of those, 7 million go un-diagnosed! In 2006, there were 65,700 lower extremity amputations performed as a result of diabetes.
This is where podiatry plays a significant role in foot care.
A comprehensive diabetic foot examination should be performed at least once a year. The comprehensive diabetic foot exam includes a vascular exam, neurological exam, dermatological exam and a musculoskeletal exam. This can identify areas of poor circulation, loss of sensation, as well as foot deformities that may lead to ulcerations. By helping to prevent ulcerations, this will help to decrease the rate of amputations. Higher risk patients may need more than one diabetic foot examination per year.
If you or someone you love has been recently diagnosed with diabetes or has had diabetes for a while, make sure to schedule an annual comprehensive diabetic foot examination with your podiatrist. For more information about diabetes, do not hesitate to visit: www.cdc.gov and search for diabetes.