For most people, a blister, cut, or scrape on the foot is no big deal -- an "ouch!" and a hurriedly applied bandage, and it's over. Not so if you have diabetes; meticulous daily foot care is as important as monitoring blood glucose, cholesterol, and blood pressure levels.
"Unfortunately, diabetes foot-health awareness doesn't have a colored ribbon or national voice," says foot care expert James Wrobel, DPM, of the University of Michigan Medical School. "If you don't manage them early, small problems...
Triple-antibiotic cream for dressing cuts or scrapes
4x4 sterile gauze pads for covering wounds
The phone number for your local wound care center or doctor's
Although cleaning your wound, dressing it with antibiotics, and covering it
with gauze are important steps in diabetes wound care, don't stop there. A
wound care specialist should see even minor injuries and foot sores, within
seven days at most.
SOURCES: Boulton, A.J. The Lancet, November 2005; vol 366, issue
9498: pp 1719-1724. American Diabetes Association: "Complications of
Diabetes in the United States." Harold Brem, MD, director, Wound Healing
Center, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York.
American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgery: "Diabetic Foot." Jeffrey
Buehrer, MD, vascular surgeon, wound care specialist, Firelands Regional
Medical Center, Sandusky, Ohio. National Diabetes Education Program:
"Medicare Coverage of Therapeutic Footwear for People with Diabetes."
American Society for Clinical Investigation: "Cellular and Molecular Basis
of Wound Healing In Diabetes." Brunilda Nazario, MD, diabetes specialist,
senior medical editor, WebMD.
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