Why are people with diabetes prone to Foot Ulcers?
Foot ulcer are one of the major problems mostly seen in elders which harm their lifestyle. According to recent studies, it is estimated that around 4 million people are suffering from foot ulcers every year and conditions like diabetes, kidney failure, high BP, and others are said to initiate them. Let us in brief learn about foot ulcers, their causes, and their effects.
What is a Foot ulcer?
Ulcers, as we all know these are painful open sores. A foot ulcer is a condition where the superficial layers of the skin on the foot brake and can also penetrate deep inside and affect bones, tendons, and other structures. People with foot ulcers experience symptoms like swelling, burning, and itching sensation in the affected areas. Foot ulcers are classified into different types based on location, the appearance of the ulcer, and its surrounding skin. 3 different types of foot ulcers are venous stasis ulcers, neurotrophic and arterial.
There are different stages of foot ulcers, in the early stages of foot ulcers, people may experience signs like inflammation or pain around the bony areas. In the second stage if the pressure increases, it leads to blisters or cracking of the skin. in the third stage, people may face hemorrhage from broken skin and it can also lead to loss of skin tissues between skin and muscle or skin loss. Foot ulcers are very difficult to treat and if it is not treated properly, it may lead to a condition called chronic foot ulcer. If poorly treated, foot ulcers may become infected and lead to several serious conditions like an abscess, bone infection, and gangrene. If foot ulcers are not treated, they may also lead to loss of the leg.
5 causes of foot ulcer
Several factors like health conditions, habits, lifestyle, and so on act as origins for foot ulcers. Most commonly seen causes of foot ulcers include
- Diabetes– People with diabetes, whether type 1 or type 2 are more prone to foot ulcers. This is because, in long run, diabetes leads to complications like neuropathy and circulation disorders which further trigger foot ulcers.
- Damaged nerves– If a person sits in one position for longer periods, it increases pressure on the tissues and harms them. When nerves get damaged, they fail to send signals to the brain regarding any damage or discomfort to the tissues which in long run may trigger foot ulcers.
- Problems with circulation– The circulation system plays a crucial role in supplying oxygen-rich fluids throughout our body. When this circulation is impaired, then it damages tissues and leads to conditions called peripheral artery disease, which further rise ulcers.
- Abnormal bone or muscle structure– Any deformities in the foot can increase pressure and lead to ulcers. Several conditions like claw feet, ill-fit shoes, arthritis, feet with fractures, and others can trigger foot ulcers.
- Sedentary lifestyle and smoking– Smoking triggers several health problems like peripheral artery disease, nerve damage, and so on which further lead to foot ulcers. sedentary lifestyle, sitting in one position for long periods can trigger foot ulcers.
Why are people with diabetes prone to foot ulcers?
Foot ulcers are more common in diabetics and it is estimated that one in six people suffering from diabetes face foot ulcers. Diabetes in long run leads to neuropathic and vascular complications which alter circulation to the feet and leads to loss of sensation. These diabetes foot ulcer causes like nerve damage, lack of circulation and pressure leads to foot ulcers.