Most of our patients at Texas Foot Specialists know to contact us when their feet or ankles hurt. However, at other times when they detect other changes in their feet, they don’t seek treatment because they believe the symptoms are not serious. What many people may not know is that even changes that don’t cause discomfort can indicate a more serious problem. Below are some symptoms that should be reported to our podiatrists, Dr. Gregory Mangum and Dr. Bruce Miller, for evaluation.
Color—changes in the color of the skin of your feet can be indicators of several medical conditions. If feet look blue or purple, this indicates a lack of oxygen reaching your feet. Potential causes for this include: diabetes, peripheral arterial disease and Raynaud’s disease. Red feet could be a symptom of an infection, such as athlete’s foot or a more serious condition, like Lupus.
Size—if your feet appear swollen and larger than normal, it may point to a problem in another part of your body. Excessive fluid buildup is symptomatic of heart disease, as well as liver or kidney failure. Pregnancy can also be a cause of swelling and is normal to some extent. Sudden or excessive swelling, however, particularly near the end of a pregnancy can be a warning sign of a dangerous condition known as preeclampsia and requires prompt medical attention.
Sensation—decreased sensation in your feet or unusual sensations such as tingling, burning or a pins and needles sensation is often associated with neuropathy, a common side effect of diabetes. Also, if you have consistently cold feet, this may mean that you have poor circulation due to an underactive thyroid, anemia or diabetes.
Although many of these conditions sound serious, early diagnosis and treatment can reduce the risk of long-term disability. Don’t put off getting changes in your feet checked out. Make an appointment at our Pasadena (281) 991-0600, Sugar Land (281) 242-4448 or Houston (713) 664-6677 office when you first notice them.