An excessive amount of sugar in the bloodstream from uncontrolled diabetes can cause the blood vessels to narrow and thereby reduce the amount of blood flowing through the veins. This is known as poor circulation, which is responsible for a variety of complications which can develop in diabetic patients—particularly in their feet—such as diabetic neuropathy (nerve damage) and peripheral artery disease (PAD). Both of these conditions can lead to pain, mobility issues, and even stroke and heart attack. Some warning signs of poor circulation include brittle nails, cold, numb, or pins-and-needles sensations in your feet, and wounds that don’t heal. If you have diabetes and are experiencing symptoms such as these, contact a podiatrist who can examine you and devise a treatment regimen to help you improve circulation in your feet.
While poor circulation itself isn’t a condition; it is a symptom of another underlying health condition you may have. If you have any concerns with poor circulation in your feet contact Matthew McQuaid, DPM of Lake Mendocino Podiatry. Our doctor will treat your foot and ankle needs.
Poor Circulation in the Feet
Peripheral artery disease (PAD) can potentially lead to poor circulation in the lower extremities. PAD is a condition that causes the blood vessels and arteries to narrow. In a linked condition called atherosclerosis, the arteries stiffen up due to a buildup of plaque in the arteries and blood vessels. These two conditions can cause a decrease in the amount of blood that flows to your extremities, therefore resulting in pain.
Some of the most common symptoms of poor circulation are:
- Throbbing or stinging pain in limbs
- Muscle Cramps
Treatment for poor circulation often depends on the underlying condition that causes it. Methods for treatment may include insulin for diabetes, special exercise programs, surgery for varicose veins, or compression socks for swollen legs.
As always, see a podiatrist as he or she will assist in finding a regimen that suits you. A podiatrist can also prescribe you any needed medication.