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Diabetic Ulcer

A diabetic ulcer is a breakdown of the skin on an area of the foot. An ulcer can develop quickly and may be painful and difficult to heal and infection is a common complication. It is important to have an x-ray to determine whether there is any bone involvement when an ulcer is present. 


  • Uncontrolled diabetes mellitus
  • Vascular insufficiency
  • Lack of sensation
  • Ill-fitting shoes
  • Trauma
  • Heredity

What can you do?

  • Consult a podiatrist immediately
  • Alert the doctor's office that you are a diabetic with a foot sore.

NOTE: Self-treatment is not recommended for this serious condition.

What might a podiatrist do?

  • Perform a physical examination
  • Take an x-ray
  • Perform debridement and wound care
  • Conduct laboratory tests

Initiate a total medical team approach, which may include your family doctor, endocrinologist, internist, vascular surgeon and infectious disease specialist.