severe pains in legs and diabetic feet

by olivia getty
(belfast)

QUESTION: How do i deal with severe pains in my legs and feet? I have just been diagnosed as Diabetic in May and have since been in constant pain and unable to sleep, walk any length of time or work and i am now feeling quite sick because of the length of time i have been on ibuprofen.



ANSWER: Hi Olivia,

Severe pain in legs in patients with diabetes is known as claducatio intermmitens. The presence of this condition in patients with diabetes is a mark of bad control of blood glucose level.

If your diabetes is diagnosed in May, the changes in the blood glucose level have been lasting for more than 2 years.

You have to know that the pain in legs and inability to walk are because of the occlusion of the arteries.

As a consequence to this occlusion, the normal blood flow is stopped leading to the reduction of the amount of blood supplying the muscles.

As you probably know, muscles need a lot of oxygen and glucose for constriction. When there is not enough oxygen or glucose, the muscles are metabolizing the glycogen (polymer of glucose) stored in them.

During the hydrolysis of glycogen, there are formed a lot of substances which are destroying the normal metabolism of the muscle cells. These substances are causing the pain and you are forced to stop walking because of the pain.

The organism needs time to metabolize the substances which are causing pain and to transform them in energy. This process requires a lot of oxygen, respectively blood.

  • You may wonder what is causing the obstruction of the arteries?

    As you probably know, the elevated glucose in plasma alters the lipid metabolism. That means that high amount of blood sugar is increasing the amount of LDL cholesterol.

    As a consequence, atherosclerosis of the blood vessels in the legs is developed, and, at the same time, causing this condition.

  • There are several things, which will help you to reduce the pain in the legs.

    1 - First of all, it is very important for you to control your blood glucose level and to keep it in normal ranges as near as you can.

    2 - Second, there are group of drugs called statins. These drugs are reducing the cholesterol and fat acids in the organism, stopping the development of atherosclerosis.

    These drugs are prescribed by doctor, because of their side effects. Therefore, please consult your doctor and never take them without prescription as you doctor knows better your health condition than I do.

    3 - Third very important thing is to do exercises (active and passive) as they will help you to improve the circulation in the legs.

    Massages to your feet are also a type of exercise. Ask to somebody else to massage your feet every night. Pour some olive oil in a plate and ask somebody to take some and massage your feet.

  • The drug you are taking (Ibuprofen) is a non-opioid analgesic. If this drugs is not able to stop or reduce the pain the legs, you should go to your doctor and to ask him to change it to another.

  • With regards to natural remedies, the herbs used to lower blood sugar have also the power to increase the circulation to your feet, reducing the pain. You can see the results by yourself.

    Hydrogen peroxide is another natural solution to increase blood flow to your feet and, subsequently reduce the pain. You can buy it from a drug store (the one used for cleaning the wounds), and apply to your feet or prepare bath with hydrogen peroxide and water.

    All the best!
    Dr.Alba

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