As we get older, a variety of health conditions can become more prevalent with many of the symptoms of systemic diseases, like diabetes showing up in your feet and ankles before they are noticed elsewhere. When you regularly see your foot doctor, they can treat these health problems in their earlier stages.
Here are problems with feet and ankles that may indicate other health issues:
- Nerve disorders—Tingling, numbness, and a sensation of shooting pain in your feet and ankles can be an early sign of diabetic neuropathy, and many other conditions that cause similar symptoms.
- Edema—Retention of fluid in your feet and ankles that may be a sign of kidney disease, circulation problems, or injury, among other issues.
- Foot and lower leg cramps— Dehydration often causes cramping in the lower legs and feet, but it can also be a sign of nutrient deficiencies and artery disease.
- Infected foot wounds—One of the main complications of diabetes is the nerve damage that causes a loss of feeling in the feet that makes it hard to notice when you have a cut or other injury without regular foot inspections.
- Skin conditions—Systemic disorders like peripheral artery disease (PAD) decrease blood circulation and can cause skin drying that leads to foot calluses and heel fissures.
- Hair loss in the extremities—Losing the hair on your feet and hands is often a sign of circulation problems and may indicate the presence of cancerous tumors.
Since the symptoms of different foot and ankle problems can be similar, see your podiatrist for the proper diagnosis and treatment. At Family Foot & Ankle Clinic, Dr. Stephen Markantone treats a wide variety of foot and ankle conditions, including sports injuries, diabetic foot issues, pediatric foot conditions, toe and foot deformities, fungal infections, and heel problems. Equipped with the most advanced technologies and dedicated staff, Family Foot & Ankle Clinic provides individualized and high-quality care for patients in the North Versailles and Delmont, PA areas. Contact our North Versailles office at 412-824-9370 or our Delmont office at 724-733-3338 to schedule an appointment.