The Diabetic Foot Syndrome is caused by several reasons.
The most common cause is diabetic neuropathy (damage of the nerves) which leads to symptoms typical for diabetics.
Another important role plays angiopathy which is damage of small and big blood vessels.
The WHO gives the following definition of the Diabetic Foot: “an infection, ulzeration and / or destruction of deep tissue, that comes along with neurologic abnormalities and / or different stages of arterial closure disease in the lower limbs.”
About every second diabetic patient is at risk to develop a Diabetic Foot Syndrome and about every fourth hospitalization of diabetics is caused by problems with the feet.
Diabetes is nowadays the most common reason for amputations which are not caused by accidents. Diabetics have to undergo amputations 30 times more often than non-diabetic individuals and after the first amputation half of the patients have to have another amputation within 5 years. Therefore it is from utmost importance to care for prevention but to react after occurrence of the damage.
Elevated blood glucose levels over a longer period of time can lead to damage of the nerves especially in the feet.
Many people suffer from sensible neuropathy where sensibility for touch, pain and temperature is disordered or lacks totally. It is responsible for sensible disorders at the feet, for ulzera caused by pressure, infections and most of the amputations.
The typical neuropathy starts at the toes and feet with paresthesia like prickling or burning and proceed to aches and pains that have to be treated with strong medication.
Many patients contemporarily suffer from angiopathy (damage of the blood vessels). This damage of the blood vessels causes symptoms like arterial closure disease, diabetic gangrene and complicates of course the healing of wounds and ulcer.
Diabetics should avoid everything that could lead to damage of the blood vessels: smoking, high blood fat or ureic acid, overweight and lack of activity.