Costs associated with diabetic foot ulcer treatment account for billions of dollars in the medical system of the United States alone, and foot-related medical problems are the primary reason for hospitalization in most diabetic patients. Diabetic foot problems can be diagnosed when the diabetic patient experiences pain, tingling, discomfort and/or pressure on any area of the foot or leg, including the foot’s sole, heel, or toes. There is a range of treatment options available for the patient suffering from this unfortunate manifestation of the disease, and it is important for the patient to seek help if and when this condition develops.

The condition of foot ulceration or deformity can be classified from minor to severe, and the treatment of diabetic foot ulcer is applied according to the severity of the case in question. Most important in early stages, after having identified and diagnosed the foot ulcer, is relief of pressure from the area in question. The American Academy of Family Physicians recommends the following for treatment of diabetic foot ulcer: “total contact casts, removable cast walkers, or ‘half shoes,’” all of whose purpose it is to remove pressure from the affected area to alleviate discomfort, to allow for the body’s natural healing of the wound and to prevent future recurrence once the healing has completed. Constant elevation of the affected foot will help, but can of course prove to be a hindrance to mobility in everyday life. The bottom line regarding foot ulceration, however, is that pressure must be relieved from the affected foot as soon and as thoroughly as possible.

Early detection and treatment for diabetic foot ulcer is imperative, and intervention must be aggressive and persistent, as once the diabetic foot ulcer has progressed past the point at which it will heal naturally, it may become necessary to amputate the affected limb. Infection, while not a common cause for the genesis of ulceration, becomes common past a certain stage in the development of diabetic foot ulcers, at which point amputation will almost certainly become a necessity.


Diabetic Leg Ulcer Treatment and Care


Similar to the discomfort and pain of diabetic foot ulcer is the diabetic leg ulcer. The diabetic leg ulcer is not as common and often not as dire as the diabetic foot ulcer, but can still lead to pain and even amputation if not properly treated. Unlike the foot ulcer, the diabetic leg ulcer will not often need relief of pressure, as the nature of the foot may result in the body’s weight being placed on the problem spot. Diabetic leg ulcers can occur for the same reasons as foot ulcers; common causes include high blood pressure, high cholesterol, bad circulation, smoking, and poor blood cell health, all of which can be common in people diagnosed with diabetes.

In both feet and legs, possible ulceration must be monitored with extreme care in diabetic patients. Any numbness, tingling, pain or discomfort should be examined thoroughly by a doctor; a diabetic patient should never assume that these feelings are normal. Vigilance against ulceration is of the utmost importance, especially in individuals who suffer from diabetes. Proper care can often mean the difference between losing a limb and keeping it; ulcers can heal, but those who suffer from diabetes must constantly be on the lookout for potential problems in these areas to allow healing to take place.