Often, we don’t give our feet enough credit! They can be a great indicator of potential health issues. Keep a close eye on your feet and be sure to consult with a medical professional if you observe any of the following changes:
Bald toes: If you notice that you suddenly lose all the hair on your toes, this could be an indication of poor circulation caused by arterial disease. It’s possible you could be suffering from a buildup of plaque in the leg arteries, which happens to approximately 8 million Americans, according to Dr. Suzanne Fuchs of North Shore University Hospital in New York.
Foot ulcers: If you notice you are developing foot ulcers that have difficulty healing, this could be a sign of diabetes. Uncontrolled glucose levels can damage nerves and cause poor circulation, making it difficult for blood to reach the feet. As a result, skin has a hard time healing properly. Foot ulcers are often a first indicator of diabetes, so be sure to get your blood sugar checked if you are experiencing foot ulcers.
Red streaks under toenails: You could have broken blood vessels known as splinter hemorrhages which happen when small blood clots damage the tiny capillaries under the nails. They can be a sign of endocarditis, which is an infection of the heart’s inner lining. This infection can result in heart failure if left untreated, so please seek medical treatment if you notice red streaks or lines under your toenails.
Dry or cracked skin: Dry, cracked or flaky skin can be a sign of a thyroid condition. If moisturizer doesn’t work to heal your dry skin, it could be a result of the thyroid not producing proper thyroid hormones, which control metabolic rate, blood pressure, tissue growth, and skeletal and nervous system development.
If you are experiencing any of these foot health issues, be sure to seek medical attention to ensure your symptoms are not indicative of a more serious disease.
DISCLAIMER: The information contained on this site is not provided by medical professionals and is provided for informational purposes only. The information on this site is not meant to substitute consulting with your podiatrist, doctor or other health care professional. The information available on or through this site is in no way intended to diagnose, influence treatment or cure any foot or other health problems nor is it a substitute for the services or advice of a podiatrist, physician, or health professional. You should always consult a physician licensed in your state in all matters relating to your health.