The Foot Blog
Posts for category: Diabetic Foot Care
Check out the video above of our podiatrists Dr. Robert Pica and Dr. Mitchell Waskin on CBS-6’s Virginia This Morning, talking with Bill Bevins about the importance of diabetic foot health.
Bill Bevins: Did you know that 30 million children and adults in the U.S. have diabetes, and adults over age 65 are more likely to be diagnosed with the disease than any other age group? Foot problems in diabetes can lead to infections, ulcers, and potential amputations. November is American Diabetes Month, and we wanted to bring in podiatrists to talk about the topic. Dr. Mitchell Waskin and Dr. Robert Pica are here this morning. Thank you gentlemen, for coming in this morning.
I remember years ago when dentists used to start checking your mouth for all kinds of stuff, and I’m going, “What are you guys looking at in there?” And they said stuff that happens in the mouth can lead to other things. This — diabetes — can lead to really big problems, can’t it?
Dr. Waskin: Yeah, it can. In fact we try to do an annual diabetic foot exam for all of our diabetic patients, and we look for little things like the condition of the skin, do they have hair on their toes (losing hair on the toes can be an early indication of losing circulation), and we educate them about looking for wounds early, because little problems in diabetics can turn into big problems fast.
Bill Bevins: You deal with wounds a lot, don’t you?
Dr. Pica: Every day.
Bill Bevins: And you brought a couple of samples here that are just as gross as they can be. So, this (holding up foot model #1) would be an early wound on a foot, somebody comes in and says my foot hurts, and you see this?
Dr. Pica: Well, part of the problem is, people don’t see this happening and they can’t feel it. This starts as a callus — about 70% of diabetic foot ulcers start as a callus — so it starts as a callus and then it shears away and reveals the skin beneath.
Bill Bevins: So how long between this, and oh my gosh, this thing here (holding up foot model #2)? This is just amazing to me that that can happen to your toes.
Dr. Pica: So this is on a spectrum; this (referring to foot model #1) would be on one end, and this (referring to foot model #2) is once there’s a severe infection or a lack of circulation and the tissue starts to die, and this is a medical emergency. This patient is going to the hospital, maybe surgery, advanced imaging, a lot of specialists are going to get involved, including vascular surgeons, hospitalists, infectious disease — this is truly a collaborative effort to save that diabetic’s feet — because there are so many things going on that contribute to a situation like this.
Bill Bevins: For that one end of your body to be in that bad a shape, there’s definitely other stuff going on in other places.
Dr. Waskin: There really is. The number one complication of diabetes is foot problems. We hear more about kidneys, eyes, things like that, but it’s feet that put more diabetics in the hospital than anything. Diabetes does affect the circulation, especially below the knee. So these are very common, and a lot of times, until this occurs, people don’t know they have a problem — which is why it’s very important to do preventive care.
Bill Bevins: So how long would a person have to let this go to get to this point, does it depend on how serious the diabetes is?
Dr. Pica: Correct. So, diabetes does a few things. It affects the circulation, and also affects your body’s immune system. It makes those cells sluggish that fight off infection. How well a patient’s diabetes is controlled and how good their circulation is — that determines how quickly it gets worse. It could be a matter of days, weeks or months. I’ve had patients who stepped on something at home, and six months later they’re admitted to the hospital with sepsis because the infection got into their blood.
Bill Bevins: So how can we prevent this from happening, and you say people don’t know they have diabetes — how do we start down this road?
Dr. Waskin: Well, first we start with your primary care physician — get your annual checkups and make sure that you find out if you have diabetes or any other problems, that’s what a good annual checkup is for. And, especially if there’s a family history, and if you are diabetic, then before you have problems, that’s when you want to come see a podiatrist — because, again, the feet are the number one problem area with diabetics. Look at your feet every day — that’s extremely important. If you see minor problems, a little red area that could be an infection, or a small sore — don’t say, “Let me take just care of it myself and throw a little ointment on it and see what happens, and then if it doesn’t heal, I’ll see the doctor” — because things can progress so quickly, you want to come in early.
Bill Bevins: Wow. Great stuff. Thank you both very much.
Our podiatrists at The Foot & Ankle Center are experts in diabetic foot care. If you or a loved one have diabetes, please contact us to schedule you annual comprehensive diabetic foot exam. Just use the button below to request an appointment.
Dr. Mitchell Waskin joined Bill Bevins and Greg McQuade on Virginia This Morning to talk about how a “Selfie Footie” can help stomp out diabetes. November is National Diabetes Awareness Month, and for the second year in a row, Dr. Waskin and his podiatry practice, The Foot & Ankle Center, are raising awareness and money to fight this disease with their Selfie Footie campaign.
How it works: For the entire month of November, people are invited to take a “selfie” of their feet, with or without shoes, maybe with silly socks or a fancy pedicure — any kind of picture of their feet — and post it on The Foot & Ankle Center’s Facebook page. For each Selfie Footie posted on their page during November, they’ll give $5 to the American Diabetes Association, up to $2,500.
As a bonus, the Selfie Footie on their Facebook page with the most “Likes” by noon each Friday in November wins a free pedicure in the practice’s onsite medical-grade nail spa (a $50 value). In a tie, the one posted first wins. See Contest Rules.
Why does a podiatry practice care so much about diabetes? Because foot problems are the number one problem that puts diabetics in the hospital, and many of those foot problems, if left untreated, can become life-threatening and lead to amputation. The good news is that a simple, painless, once-a-year diabetic foot exam can lower a patient's risk by 85 percent. Dr. Waskin urges every diabetic to have a comprehensive, diabetic foot exam every year, without fail. It’s a test that can save people’s feet, and even their lives.
If you’d like to help raise awareness and dollars to fight diabetes, please visit our Facebook page and post a picture of your feet as a comment on the “Show Us Your Selfie Footie” post. Post as many Selfie Footies as you like — each one is worth another $5 for the American Diabetes Association!
And, if you’re diabetic and haven’t had your annual diabetic foot exam yet, please request an appointment:
The Foot & Ankle Center is having their second “Selfie Footie” campaign to raise awareness and money for the American Diabetes Association. Dr. Waskin was on 12News to talk about it recently.
How can a “Selfie Footie” help stomp out diabetes? For the entire month of November, which is National Diabetes Awareness month, people are encouraged to take a picture of their feet and post it on The Foot & Ankle Center’s Facebook page. For each Selfie Footie posted during November, the practice will donate $5 to the American Diabetes Association — up to $2,500. And, to make things interesting, the Selfie Footie on their Facebook page with the most “Likes” by noon each Friday during November will be the winner of a free pedicure in the practice’s onsite medical-grade nail spa ($50 value). In a tie, the first one posted will win. See contest rules.
Dr. Waskin and the other podiatrists at The Foot & Ankle have a special interest in diabetic foot care, because they treat so many patients with diabetic foot problems. In fact, foot problems are the top reason that diabetics are hospitalized. If not caught and detected early, diabetic foot problems can develop into serious, even life-threatening problems, sometimes leading to amputations. But a simple, painless, diabetic foot exam once a year can lower a patient’s risk by 85 percent, by catching foot problems early and treating them before they become much worse.
Need to schedule a diabetic foot exam? Request an appointment:
We're doing it again! For the second year in a row, we're observing National Diabetes Awareness Month with our "Selfie Footie" campaign. Now through Nov. 30, for each Selfie Footie you post on our Facebook page , we'll give $5 to the American Diabetes Association, up to $2,500. As a bonus, you could win a free pedicure! The Selfie Footie on our Facebook page with the most "Likes" by noon each Friday in November wins a free pedicure in our medical-grade nail spa ($50 value)! In a tie, the one that was posted FIRST wins. See contest rules.
Why do we care so much about kicking diabetes? Because we see a lot of patients with diabetic foot problems, which are are the number one cause of hospitalization for diabetics, sometimes leading to amputations. (This is also why we stress the importance of annual comprehensive diabetic foot exams! If you're diabetic and you haven't had your annual foot exam yet, please make an appointment as soon as possible!)
Help us raise awareness and dollars for the American Diabetes Association! The more Selfie Footies you post on our Facebook page by Nov. 30, the more we'll raise. Each Selfie Footie is worth $5, so post as many Selfie Footies as you can! If you're not sure how to post a Selfie Footie on our Facebook page, just follow the instructions below. Thank you!
How to Post a Selfie Footie With Your Smart Phone:
The results are in from our November "Selfie Footie" fundraiser for the American Diabetes Association! All of us at the Foot & Ankle Center want to thank every person who took part in our Selfie Footie campaign. We appreciate the time you took to snap pictures of your feet and post them on our Facebook page — some with crazy socks, others with fabulous pedicures — there was lots of creativity, and some of you even posted multiple Selfie Footies. For each Selfie Footie you posted during November, we are donating $5 to the American Diabetes Association.
So, how much did we raise? We received a total of 240 Selfie Footies, and that adds up to a $1,200 donation for the American Diabetes Association, thanks to each of you who shared your Selfie Footies!
Why is a podiatry practice so interested in diabetes? We actually have a very special interest in raising awareness about diabetic foot health. That's because foot problems are the number one problem that put diabetics in the hospital. Foot problems can become serious and can lead to amputation or even death if not diagnosed and treated promptly. So, for anyone with diabetes, it's vital to have an annual comprehensive diabetic foot exam. By having this simple, painless exam once a year, diabetics can lower their risk factors for foot complications leading to amputation by 85 percent. If you have diabetes and haven't had a diabetic foot exam in the last year, please make an appointment with us for this potentially lifesaving exam, as soon as possible.
Once again, thanks to each of you for all of your Selfie Footies, making this past November a fun and meaningful National Diabetes Awareness Month!