If you have
Type 1 or 2 Diabetes
and have been recommended to see a Chiropodist for a foot care and diabetic foot checkup, you might be wondering what’s involved. Here, we’ll address some of the most common questions patients have about diabetic foot care appointments.
What is going to happen at my first appointment?
A thorough medical history will be taken to understand your diabetes and health in general. It’s good to come prepared with your latest blood sugar number, and reports from your family doctor or endocrinologist.
This is when a Chiropodist checks to see how good your circulation is to your feet and toes. They use a special hand-held Doppler (small ultrasound machine) so they can listen to your foot pulses. They will also check things like temperature, hair growth, skin colour, swelling, varicose or spider veins, and more.
Your Chiropodist will check to see how well the bottom, top, and sides of your feet can feel pressure and vibration. Through a few easy and pain-free tests, they can determine whether your feet have any signs and symptoms of neuropathy—a common complication with diabetes where the nerves stop communicating to your brain about pain or pressure sensation on the bottom of the foot.
The Chiropodist will look at your foot, ankle, and legs up and down for any signs of skin breakdown, corns, callous, long, thick, or deformed toe nails, ingrown toenails, maceration (white spots in-between toes), lumps, discoloration, check moles, dry or wet skin, scratches or cuts, red marks, or any signs of ulceration.
This is a very important part of the appointment when the Chiropodist will explain how diabetes can affect the feet, from the small things to the large and scary side effects associated to diabetes. They will also discuss things you need to be doing at home to ensure your feet are safe and prevent damage from happening. Recommendations will be made about shoes, socks, insoles, and routine care.
Any issues will be addressed today, such as: clipping toenails, removing corns or callouses, and treatment of ulcerations, cuts, or scrapes.
How long will the appointment take?
Diabetic foot care appointments take 40 minutes on average.