Diabetic Dermopathy: Causes, Symptoms & Treatment
Diabetes is a condition in which the body's ability to produce or respond to insulin is impaired. This results in abnormal metabolism of carbohydrates and causes the glucose levels in the blood to spike up . Diabetes is associated with several signs and symptoms, such as increased urination, extreme fatigue, etc. One condition that quite a number of diabetics suffer from is diabetic dermopathy . This is a skin condition that is usually found on the lower legs. Up to 50 per cent of diabetics have a chance of being affected by this condition. Read on to know more about diabetic dermopathy, its causes, symptoms and treatment.
Diabetic dermopathy (also known as shin spots or pigmented pretibial patches) is a condition that is quite common among diabetics. It is a skin condition that is characterized by round, shiny lesions. These lesions are light brown to red in colour. They are usually found on the lower legs of people with diabetes .
Doctors say that the condition occurs when there is a minor leakage of blood from these blood vessels into the skin . These patches are usually not painful but can sometimes cause a burning sensation or itching. Although, there is no specific time when it occurs, in most of the cases it has been observed when there has been some kind of trauma or injury.
Contrary to what is believed by many, diabetic dermopathy is not a rare condition. Up to a third of people with diabetes has diabetic dermopathy . It is known as shin spots commonly (this is due to its location).
Although the exact cause of this condition has not been proven through clinical trials, it is believed by medical experts that this condition is caused due to damages to the nerves and blood vessels in a diabetic patient.
There is a possibility that this condition is linked to other conditions that might arise when a person has diabetes, such as diabetic neuropathy, diabetic nephropathy and diabetic retinopathy .
It affects both people with insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus as well as those with non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus.
The following individuals hold a higher risk of facing this condition :
People with diabetes are usually prone to skin problems. This is because a high blood sugar level makes the body lose fluids and get dry . Skin that is dry can get cracked easily. If dry skin is left unmanaged, then it could cause itchy skin. Itchy skin, in turn, is highly susceptible to various kinds of infections.
This condition is said to improve as time passes. However, it is important that the region of the lesions is kept well-moisturized . It is important that the lower legs do not suffer from any injury as it could worsen the condition with an increase in the number of patches .
Your doctor would be treating you for your general diabetes, so there is no particular medical intervention required for treating the spots, patches or lesions. Nevertheless, it is important that one keeps his or her blood sugar levels under control because that is what triggers dermopathy. Keeping your blood sugar levels under control is the best treatment that you can offer to the dermopathy condition.
When blood glucose levels are under control, not just diabetic dermopathy, plenty of other complications would also be sorted.
It is important to understand that diabetic dermopathy is one of the several complications of diabetes mellitus. Diabetes is a disease that will last forever. Although there is no cure for it, it can very well be managed with simple steps and measures.
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