November 14 is World Diabetes Day: the date corresponds to the birth of Professor Banting, who together with his student Best isolated insulin in 1921, changing the history of diabetes mellitus patients, allowing their survival.
The theme of the 2022 Day, chosen by the International Diabetes Federation, is access to care for all, as millions of people around the world still fail to obtain the available therapies. The goal is to encourage governments to invest more in care and prevention and early detection so that technologies, drugs and support are available to all people with diabetes.
The Diabetic Foot is one of the most serious and disabling long-term complications of diabetes mellitus; among the main consequences of the pathology we find:
- diabetic neuropathy, that is, a bad sensitivity mainly in the lower limbs that is manifested by tingling, cramps, gait disorders and perceptual alterations (inability to perceive pain, heat, cold);
- diabetic arterial disease, that is, a pathological condition attributable to disorders in the blood circulation of the arteries (poor blood circulation); Although the complications of this disease can affect the whole body, ulcerative lesions that manifest in the diabetic foot are among the most feared, because they can expose to the risk of amputation of the limb and sometimes to fatal outcome.
The initial symptoms of a diabetic foot may be: increase in foot temperature, sensitivity impairment, presence of bubbles, cuts, scratches or ulcers, -tingling (may occur at night and impair sleep), skin cold to the touch and pale (can be an important alarm bell), feeling of “pinpricks” at the level of the feet and legs.
Diabetic foot care consists of:
- personalised medication and treatment plan to ensure revascularization of the affected limb,
- removal of non-viable tissues and dressing with sterile bandages and gauze,
- adoption of braces and support surfaces for preventive purposes
- pain therapy (after medical consultation) with analgesics and painkillers,
- remodeling, regenerative and reconstructive treatments.
10 TIPS TO PREVENT IT
It is a process that starts from prevention, as promoted by the SID, which has drawn up a decalogue of practical advice for a correct prevention of diabetic foot:
1) Examine the feet daily, in particular the plant, the heel and between the fingers. Observe if between the fingers the skin is macerated, whitish, and if the nails tend to turn inward.
2) Wash your feet daily with warm water and good quality soap. Dry them well with a soft towel, especially between your fingers. Do not do prolonged foot baths or salts: macerate or dehydrate the skin.
3) After washing the feet, look if there are hard skin thickenings on the heel or on the margins of the sole of the foot. In this case, gently rub the affected parts with a natural pumice stone.
4) After drying the feet, massage them with a moisturizer to keep the skin supple and soft.
5) Avoid too hot or too cold temperatures and therefore do not use hot water bottles or thermophores.
6) Never walk barefoot, not even at home or on the beach. Wear comfortable shoes
7) Never wear shoes without socks. Then wear socks of the right size, without mending and, possibly, without seams such as, for example, compression socks.
8) Cut the nails straight, not too short, with a round tip nipper. Do not use sharp scissors and then, to smooth the corners, use a round-tipped file. Always warn the podiatrist that you have diabetes.
9) Do not cut calluses or calluses. Do not puncture blisters or blisters with needles. Cover the wounds with sterile gauze, to be fixed with an elastic net or a paper patch. Do not use bandages.
10) Never listen to advice from relatives, neighbors or other people with diabetes, but always follow the doctor’s instructions.
Frequent visits and checks can help to ascertain the risk that a person with diabetes may have this complication and prevent the disease from escalating or worsening.