DIABETES FOOT MANAGEMENT
Diabetes can cause nerve damage and blood vessel disease in the feet. This may cause skin and tissue breakdown, which can develop into non-healing wounds (ulcers), which are at risk of infection. This may even result in limb amputation. Structural deformity leaves bony prominence exposed to increased external pressure on the skin, leaving it at risk of being damaged. Identification of patients at risk of diabetic foot disease allows early intervention of preventative measures to be taken, and thus reduces the risk of further complications.
Diabetes Foot Screening Aim: To allow categorisation into Low, At Risk or Active Foot Disease. Based on this assessment the patient is allocated to a risk group using the integrated model of care for the diabetic foot.
• All patients with diabetes are offered annual screening and regular foot inspections/examinations from early diagnosis.
• Foot review and screening is carried out by appropriately trained staff.
• Foot care education is provided to individuals according to their clinical and personal needs.
• Patients are regularly assessed for their risk of foot ulceration and classified as low, at-risk (moderate or high risk) or with active foot disease.
FOOT CARE EDUCATION
Taking Care of You
• Nail care • Emollient use • Footwear • Daily self-examination of the feet • Not walking in bare feet • Checking footwear and hosiery before putting them on • “Breaking shoes in” never to be attempted • No hot water bottles • Checking bath and shower temperature • Avoidance of home remedies e.g. corn plasters • What to do and the appropriate person to contact if foot problems develop