Charcot Foot6 months, 2 weeks ago
Posted on Apr 03, 2018, 6 p.m.
About 6% of the population suffer from diabetes. One of the common issues with diabetes is the diabetic foot, which is the prime reason for hospitalization of a diabetic person.
Foot problems are common in individuals with diabetes due to the two factors of circulation being impaired and the nerves being damage. The first being poor circulation actually leads to the second of nerve damage, which results in the occurrence of diabetic joint disease of the foot or Charcot arthropathy, that is the common cause of foot deformity and disability in some.
Treatment options for Charcot foot vary with the mainstay being preventive care through appropriate exercises, which involve daily foot inspections for early detection which is necessary to achieve good health and prevent development of issues including foot disease.
Diabetic patients have weakened blood vessels as a result circulation to the foot is reduced which causes bones to become fragile, and joints of the ankle and foot breakdown, that causes diabetic patients to be at higher risk of fractures in the bones of the foot.
In early stages of diabetic foot casts are used to keep the ankle and foot bones safe from displacement and injury, which is helpful in decreasing swelling as well. Affected patients must stay off the foot until signs of the bone healing occur which may take upward of 3 months, during which time the cast is replaced every 1-2 weeks to allow for tissue shrinkage as swelling subsiding.
Charcot foot often requires specialized boots to protect the foot from uneven stress and ulcers which are custom ordered for patients who are no longer able to wear ordinary shoes, and are only worn after acute swelling has subsided and bones show evidence of knitting together again.
In some patients foot deformity may prevent wearing protective shoes and increases risk of ulcer formation, in such cases surgery is often required. Patients with dislocated bones or unstable fractures surgery is needed to restore the correct position and promote healing, there are different types of surgery for different surgical interventions.
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