What does a podiatrist check in an annual diabetic assessment of the feet? 

1.    Assess the blood flow

a.    Review signs and symptoms – rest pain, sharp leg cramps after walking short distances, cuts to the feet healing slowly, colour changes within the feet and legs

b.    Look at the temperature of the skin, hair growth and nail growth

c.    Look for differences between the feet

d.    Look at skin changes

e.    Assess the pulses within the feet with a hand-held ultrasound machine

2.    Assess the nerve function

 a.    Review signs and symptoms of nerve damage ie. numbness in the feet, burning sensation, pins and needles within the feet

b.    look at the sensation to the feet through testing of a Monofilament and tuning fork

3.    Assess function of the feet

a.    Assess any bony prominences of the feet and pressure lesions ie corns and callous

b.    Muscle function, foot function and shape

c.    Examine the footwear, noting pattern of wear on soles, correct sizing, material and type of shoe

4.    Discuss Diabetes and its effect on feet

a.    Advice on good daily foot care – hygiene and maintenance

Find out more about the most serious diabetic foot complications and how to care for your feet here

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