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Question:

From Ballston Spa, New York, USA:

My 75 year old aunt, who has had type 2 diabetes for three years and is managing her condition well, has had a broken bone in her foot for a while. She hasn't found a doctor who has been able to help her so she's despairing, and understandably depressed. She had a kidney removed when she was 10 years old, so that makes her even more nervous about her condition. There's a lot going on here, and her family is trying to help in any way possible to get her the help she needs to heal. What should someone with diabetes consider with a broken bone? Does the healing process take longer? Is a conventional approach to healing the bone practical? What should she be aware of or watch for?

Answer:

There are several things to consider when someone with diabetes has a broken foot. First and foremost is blood sugar control -- one heals better and faster when blood sugar is well controlled, so it is important to follow one's meal plan, test blood sugar more frequently and perhaps take more diabetes medication if needed (under medical supervision) during this time. A second problem is that physical activity is limited with a broken foot which most likely will contribute to a rise in blood sugar levels. I suggest that your aunt speak to her health care provider about her diabetes control and possible need for increased medication and ask for a referral for physical therapy to help increase her physical activity level.

JS

DTQ-20020608232516
Original posting 4 Jul 2002
Posted to Sick Days

  
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Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:09:36
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