Diabetics Face Serious Foot problems Like Amputations

Robert Kosofsky, D.P.M.
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Piscataway & Hillsborough Podiatrist, Dr. Robert Kosofsky has over 25 years of experience.
Posted on Jun 21, 2010

Diabetics face serious foot problems. Many diabetics do not realize that if they do not closely monitor their feet and have them checked regularly they could endure toe, foot, even leg amputations.  At Greenville Memorial Hospital, there is a major diabetic amputation every three days.  "It is a cruel disease," says Dr. John York, a vascular surgeon who performs such surgeries. 

Diabetes causes nerve damage, such as diabetic neuropathy, and limits or eliminates feeling in the feet. When a sore develops or even a minor cut occurs, diabetics may not notice the problem until it is too late. The infection that developed in the wound can spread all the way to the bone.  Amputations restrict the quality of life and force people to become more dependent on others.
diabetic foot check
In order to prevent serious complications, diabetics need to constantly check their feet thoroughly including the top, between toes, and on the bottom (using a mirror or another person to check the bottom may help).  The American Diabetes Association suggests diabetics get the Comprehensive Diabetic Foot Exam (CDFE) at least once a year.  In addition, Medicare has developed many beneficial programs for high risk diabetics including the "free shoe" program where they allow for a pair of diabetic shoes and three inserts annually.*


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