Diabetes: The telltale sign of ‘long-standing’ high blood sugar on the ‘sides’ of the feet
Type 2 diabetes can be a 'devastating diagnosis' says expert
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Diabetes caseloads have spiked in the past year, but doctors remain adamant early detection could curb the likelihood of dire health outcomes. The condition comprises different pathologies, where the pancreas is either unable to work properly or produce enough insulin. The eventual outcome of this is chronic high blood sugar levels that wreak havoc on the body. Certain telltale signs, however, are indicative that blood sugar levels have been high for a long time.
The recent increase in BMI and diabetes has stalled global efforts to reduce the number of heart attacks and strokes.
Early detection of high blood sugar levels, however, could help curtail such deadly risks.
In the initial stages, diabetes rarely produces overt symptoms. When high blood sugar levels become chronic, however, this can inflict substantial damage on the eyes, heart and feet if left untreated.
At this stage, symptoms may appear swiftly.
READ MORE: Type 2 diabetes: The breakfast drink that keeps blood sugar levels low even after lunch
One of the hallmarks of diabetic dermopathy is light brown scaly patches of skin that appear on the surface of the skin.
WebMD writes: “These can look like simple age spots. But they’re not. High blood sugar from diabetes damages small blood vessels and causes these brownish patches.
“These roundish, rough spots often appear on your shins.
“Dermopathy is usually harmless and should fade away in 18 months or so. It also can last a long time. ”
The condition is thought to stem from changes in the small blood vessels that supply the skin.
The patches may vary in colours; from pinkish-red to dark brown, and will usually be round or oval in shape.
Patches that are long-standing may become slightly intended and will be located on the thighs, sides of feet, forearms and shins.
According to the website Skintight, the lesions will normally improve over time, but keeping the affected area well moisturised could prevent the development of some lesions.
How to avoid diabetes
Type 2 diabetes occurs when the insulin in the pancreas is unable to work properly, or the pancreas is unable to make enough insulin.
The result of this is high blood sugar levels – also known as hyperglycaemia – which is responsible for causing substantial damage to the body.
This initial rise in high blood sugar is clinically referred to as prediabetes.
The early impetus to make lifestyle changes at this stage could substantially lower the odds of developing type 2 diabetes – a lifelong condition.
Maintaining a healthy weight should be the first resort for avoiding diabetes.
Though there is no cure for type 2 diabetes, some people are able to put their condition into remission by also losing weight as quickly and safely as possible following diagnosis.
Other risk factors for diabetes that are not modifiable include age, genetic predisposition and ethnicity.
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