Diabetic foot (charcot foot)
Over time elevated blood sugar levels cause the tissues of the body to become stiff. This includes muscles, tendons, nerves and blood vessels. This leads to nerve dysfunction (peripheral neuropathy) and decreased circulation. Peripheral neuropathy is a major issue for diabetics. It means they are unable to feel pressure or pain, which can lead to ulcers and a charcot foot.
A Charcot foot is a condition which develops as a result of the peripheral neuropathy. The foot is unable to maintain its normal structure, and the small bones of the foot collapse and fracture. This results in pain, severe deformity, inflammation and high risk of ulceration.
Conservative treatment of a diabetic foot requires management to reduce the risk of developing ulcers and/or charcot neuropathy. Management includes:
For patients with a charcot foot there are 3 phases of the pathology which require different treatments. These include:
- Total Contact Cast
- CROW (Charcot Restraint Orthotic Walker)
- Custom made footwear or extra width/depth footwear
- Custom made foot orthoses
Diabetic feet require appropriate management with constant reviews, to ensure no pressure areas or ulcers develop.
To determine the most appropriate treatment for you, we recommend booking an initial consultation to discuss your concerns in more detail.