More Diabetic Foot Disasters
Two more diabetic foot disasters arrived in the practice and at my Hospital clinic this weekend. Another hot water bottle burn, plus a corn paste induced abscess.
Loss of sensation and lack of foot health education contributed to the elderly lady with Type 2 diabetes burning her left little toe and the lower part of her calf, plus blistering her right big toe. The lower calf is about 2mm deep and the blisters were still covering intact skin.
If you are in any way involved with people with diabetes this winter please warn them of the dangers of hot water bottles, heating pads etc. Remind them of the tips I put out recently for winter foot care.
When diabetes causes loss of sensation in the lower leg then putting hot objects like hot water bottles next to the skin can lead to serious damage.
Medicated corn plasters and pastes have been around for years and are usually used by desperate people who don’t know that a podiatrist can give them relief from their painful corns and calluses.
Sadly my patient is also a Type 2 diabetic, but without complications and therefore was in great pain.
I drained the abscess, applied appropriate dressings and prescribed antibiotics. This lady is booked off work for 3 days plus the weekend and I will see her again on Thursday.
That’s a big penalty in lost working time for a lady who was simply trying to take care of her feet but did not understand the value of taking professional advice until it was too late.
So who is to blame for these disasters? If the patients concerned didn’t know, then I am for not getting the good foot health message across to enough people. On the other hand the patients did know who to come to for help.