Skin Complications and Diabetes

Skin Complications and Diabetes

Diabetes is a chronic disease affecting our internal system that transforms blood sugar into energy. No cure of diabetes has been found yet. However, healthy life patterns such as healthy diet and healthy physical activity assist in managing the disease.

If not managed well, diabetes can cause severe health issues in the long run such as heart diseases, loss of vision, kidney problems and skin complications as well.

The following skin issues are noteworthy:

Acanthosis Nigricans (AN):

It is a treatable skin condition that can be a sign of pre-diabetes or diabetes. This skin indication usually occurs to people who are overweight. It darkens the skin around the neck area, armpits and genitals.

Diabetic Blisters (Bullosis Diabeticorum):

These are painless blisters which usually appear on hands, fingers, forearms, toes, feet and legs. In appearance they look like burn blisters. The cause of these blisters is diabetic neuropathy: an injury to nerves caused by diabetes.

Diabetic Dermopathy:

These are small lesions on the skin mostly appearing on the bony parts of the body, usually the shin, in clustered patches. They may also appear on the front of thighs, scalp, feet, chest and forearms. Poorly managed diabetes often leads to diabetic dermopathy. This skin condition is also treatable.

Necrobiosis Lipoidica:

It is a rare inflammatory skin disorder which appears on the shin of diabetics as yellowish brown patches. It is irregular in shape. This particular disease of the skin is mostly common amongst female patients than males. It develops in young and middle aged adults. Ulceration often complicates necrobiosis lipoidica cases. Ulcers are at a risk of secondary bacterial infections causing delay in the healing process.

Eruptive Xanthomatosis:

It is also a rare skin condition which occurs as a result of poorly-controlled diabetes. Diabetic patients with high cholesterol levels often develop this skin complication. The lesions vary in size and appear like yellow/orange coloured flat bumps.

Open sores and wounds:

High blood sugar level for a longer period of time leads to poor blood circulation and nerve damage. Insufficient blood circulation makes it difficult for the wounds to heal. Among diabetic patients, this usually happens in the extremities of the body, especially the feet.

Sclerederma Diabeticorum:

It is a rare skin disorder that occurs in men with poorly controlled diabetes. The skin becomes thick and hard on the back of the neck, shoulders, arms and upper back making reddish lesionsthat are painless.

Skin Tags:

People with diabetes may develop skin tags which are small growths hanging from the skin. Though harmless they may cause irritation. The causes are multiple and it may not necessarily be due to diabetes. However, researches have indicated that people with skin tags are at a high risk of diabetes.

Granuloma Annulare:

It is a skin complication that causes patches which may look like skin colored, pink or bluish purple. The reasons for eruption could be many. However, studies have proven that diabetic patients are most likely to develop granuloma annulare. People with this skin condition are advised by doctors that they should be tested for diabetes.

General Skin Conditions:

Diabetic patients tend to get skin infections such as boils and blisters often with watery discharge or puss. It can occur in any part of the body but most likely these appear on the extremities of the body such as toes, around the nails and scalp.

Diabetes can cause many skin problems. Most of them are harmless and treatable. However, a minor skin issue may become serious for people who have diabetes. If you are diabetic and facing any of these skin complications then do not delay. Consult a good doctor for correct medical advice.

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