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jabbajane

Dying skin on lower legs?

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Why does the skin on ankles and lower legs turn dark and spottled along with swollen ankles? Dr. says its a natural progression of Diabetes. What is it and what can be down about it? Will feet and ankles eventually be lost?

scared in NH:confused: :(:confused:

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mmmm...I don't know enough to about this to really tell you what is going on. but I want to make a couple comments. what is your blood sugar control like?, first. Second is that all your doctor had to say? you just stuck with this and nothing can be done? I am not sure about that at all.

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Swollen ankles might be water retention, check the side effects of some of your medications.

Did the doc check you for circulation on your feet?

 

I read here on the Forums that Alpha Lipoic - a supplement-helps with circulation, you may need to walk more, also massage your legs & feet.

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Acanthosis nigricans - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

 

I have read about this on the forums over the years..here is the wiki on it..

 

Others have had improvement with tightening up their bg control. From memory, I don't think it is a direct lead in to neuropathy and loss of digits, but if your control is the problem that of course is always a danger too...

 

It is important to note that after a few years reading forums I have read many frightened and despairing first posts that turn into delighted squeals of happiness at how their control (and therefore life) improve when they hang out with others who egg them on to get better and do better...

 

We all benefit from a cheerleading section.

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Never heard the leg discoloration was AN ... that is more an armpit and groin phenom, in type 2's, no? In AN the skin texture changes, too.

 

The leg discoloration ... DH has ALWAYS had that, is very mildly preD, his Dad has it, and his dad (not at all D) has PAD. Nobody (medical) ever seems particularly concernend about it, though.

 

I would look up PAD and also check Dermatology texts or sites.

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Years ago we went to a diabetes support group. One of the speakers was a vascular doctor who gave an excellent talk about diabetes. Maybe you could go to a vascular doctor and see what he or she says. that would at least give you peace of mind. That is if your insurance would pay. Just a thought.

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Why does the skin on ankles and lower legs turn dark and spottled along with swollen ankles? Dr. says its a natural progression of Diabetes. What is it and what can be down about it? Will feet and ankles eventually be lost?

scared in NH:confused: :(:confused:

 

Do a google on Statis Dermatitus. I think this is what you are talking about.

 

I've been having a horrible time with it on both legs from the knees to ankles for more than a year. I'm not having it on my arms.

 

You didn't say if it itched or not....mine drives me crazy. I get open sore spots and the skin cracks open. You also didn't mention while having an active episode how red and burning your skin will become... like it's being burned with a hot iron.

 

I've had my endro. Doctor look at this, I've been in the hospital with it (while having been admitted for something else) and am currently seeing a Dermatologist who has given me an Rx for Diprolene... which does work.

 

Now... is the discoloration going to go away?? I'm told no. That the brownish color is actually blood beneath the skin as a result of broken down tissues. While having a raging episode with this dermatitis, my feet, toes to knees will become painfully swollen. My feet look deformed and often I can only wear open backed slippers.

 

The severe swelling/pressure also breaks down the tissue allowing the blood to pool under the skin. I've been prescribed stockings to wear which have also helped to keep the swelling under control. ... they cost about 35.00 a pair and most insurance plans will pay for up to 3 pairs at a time per 6 months. I have to wear them everyday or else the swelling comes right back.

 

Yes, this is a condition that is often found in diabetics. I've also had celulitus which is a real nightmare. I wound up in the hospital with that for 2 weeks.

 

If this form of dermatitis isn't taken care of, it can develop into celultius, however, my experience was the opposite... celulitus first, cured and then the dermatitis.

 

ok.. I've said a lot not even being sure this is what the OP is about. Maybe after you check google, you can confirm what I've said here.

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I *just happen* to have some pictures LOLOL... seriously, I do. I took them in case I needed them to document my Social Security Disability claim... which I didn't as I was just cleared for it 2 weeks ago.

 

In these pics you aren't able to see how red my legs are but the shiny surface you see is because my skin is so tight it shone. I don't have any normal pictures of my legs but I'll say this...my ankles are normally very thin...in fact, my legs are....err....were one of my best features.

 

These were taken about 4-6 weeks ago.

 

IMG_0143.jpg

 

IMG_0145.jpg

 

The little bumps you see become blister like, itch beyond belief and then break open and become sores like the ones you see with scabs on them.

 

IMG_0147.jpg

 

The big toe is missing a toe nail due to surgical removal at the root of the nail.... had this done twice and still some nail develops on the surface. It is *supposed* to be smooth.

 

The red streaks you see are almost like stretch marks of the skin.... that's how taught the skin gets.

 

IMG_0146.jpg

 

Needless to say, when swollen to this degree, it's VERY painful and walking almost impossible. Dr said when I'm like this I probably retain about 20 pounds of fluid.

 

I'm curious now to see if you can relate to what you've seen here.

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I have the same thing, only my feet are almost black and blue in places. But, I have pretty good control, I think. I went from an A1C of 6 to 6.7, but I think I am on the way back down again. I also have very good circulation in my feet, but I do have neuropathy. My doctor said it was just a Diabetic progression too. But, I am seeing a foot doctor next week, but that is mostly to fix my toes. The three doctors I have asked about it so far, don't seem very concerned, one even says it is just part of aging. It itches and sometimes flakes because it is so dry, but other than that doesn't bother me except for how it looks.

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Yes, I forgot to add about circulation Penny.

 

I too have good circulation per the tests done, however, some of the fluid retention is due to *faulty/aging valves*. Translated, this means that the blood valves open just fine for the blood going from head to toes - it's the reverse that is the problem... the valves don't open as well as they should for on the way up.... YET.... they say I have good circulation.... I dunno.....

 

When I'm having a major episode, I too will have black and blue marks. I've also noticed that being too warm... for me anything over 75 degrees is too warm, I have a tendency to develop all kinds of skin ailments.

 

This growing older with diabetes is gonna be a killer.... no pun intended LOL. I'm convinced that I've met what I'm going to die of. Diabetes ruins all of the body in time.

 

I'm not being negative in saying the above... just objective.

 

Sorry you have the same condition I do with your legs... but it's better to have them this way than to have to have them amputated right????

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Yes, I forgot to add about circulation Penny.

 

I too have good circulation per the tests done, however, some of the fluid retention is due to *faulty/aging valves*. Translated, this means that the blood valves open just fine for the blood going from head to toes - it's the reverse that is the problem... the valves don't open as well as they should for on the way up.... YET.... they say I have good circulation.... I dunno.....

 

When I'm having a major episode, I too will have black and blue marks. I've also noticed that being too warm... for me anything over 75 degrees is too warm, I have a tendency to develop all kinds of skin ailments.

 

This growing older with diabetes is gonna be a killer.... no pun intended LOL. I'm convinced that I've met what I'm going to die of. Diabetes ruins all of the body in time.

 

I'm not being negative in saying the above... just objective.

 

Sorry you have the same condition I do with your legs... but it's better to have them this way than to have to have them amputated right????

 

I tried to find your age someplace but couldn't. :) I am 62, have had 2 heart attacks and cancer, so I would be surprised not to have other things wrong. I have had all the tests for circulation, and they come back good...and not just good for an old lady. :D But my feet also swell from retaining water, one doctor wants me to reduce my water intake, another always tells me I need to drink more water. I do drink a lot of water, because I like it and I feel better when I do and it doesn't seem to be a direct reason for my feet swelling. They swell when I walk a lot, and when I have eaten too much salty foods, and sometimes for no reason I can figure. And I am grateful that I do not need to have them amputated. :)

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I'm 63 Penny. I was doing ok up until 2 years ago when my body just decided to implode... all kinds of stuff started happening... serious things.

 

I had been working up until my 1st hospitalization, admitted through ER, where I was told had I not gotten there when I did, I would have been dead in 2 hours. I was in the hospital 4 times that year... up to 2-4 weeks at a time.

 

I'm now deemed legally disabled due to the many conflicting health issues I have. If I only had one of all that I do have, I would be doing ok... but having them all at the same time makes me a very high risk says my Dr.

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I'm 63 Penny. I was doing ok up until 2 years ago when my body just decided to implode... all kinds of stuff started happening... serious things.

 

I had been working up until my 1st hospitalization, admitted through ER, where I was told had I not gotten there when I did, I would have been dead in 2 hours. I was in the hospital 4 times that year... up to 2-4 weeks at a time.

 

I'm now deemed legally disabled due to the many conflicting health issues I have. If I only had one of all that I do have, I would be doing ok... but having them all at the same time makes me a very high risk says my Dr.

 

I know how you must feel and am sorry that you have all this to deal with. I just decided I was going to work hard to control one thing in my life and that's what I do about the diabetes. I figure I can't do much about the cancer and the doctor takes care of my heart, but I can have control over my BS.....Kinda, most of the time, sorta. :D So if this foot problem is a result of Diabetes, I am doing all I can. If it is just because I am aging, then that is something I have to accept, but......NO FAIR! Sometimes I want to rant at the powers that be....work hard all my life, try to stay healthy and what do I get.... old ugly feet! OK, I am done, sometimes you just need to let it out. :)

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It's not so bad... we have an edge on being able to win any ugliest feet contest :D

 

Listen to this... all in the same week I got:

 

RX compression stockings

Handicapped parking pac for my car

Accepted by Social Security disability

Told I have the beginnings of glaucoma per eye exam

 

Talk about an ego buster week :T

 

oh... I also have the beginnings of neuropathy YaY me... not in the eyes but in the feet and up the shins. I'm on meds for it.

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It's not so bad... we have an edge on being able to win any ugliest feet contest :D

 

Listen to this... all in the same week I got:

 

RX compression stockings

Handicapped parking pac for my car

Accepted by Social Security disability

Told I have the beginnings of glaucoma per eye exam

 

Talk about an ego buster week :T

 

oh... I also have the beginnings of neuropathy YaY me... not in the eyes but in the feet and up the shins. I'm on meds for it.

 

Was it Bette Davis who said "Old age isn't for sissies." or something like that because I know someone will correct me? :)

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Heck Penny, I'm not even old yet..... just sayin...

 

However, I do feel I'm not saving too much for when I get to *the home* ;)

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David Mendosa, a diabetic journalist who writes about diabetes, recently recommended a book called Keep the Legs You Stand On by Mark Hinkes, a podiatrist. I just got it and started reading it, but haven't gotten far enough to give you my opinion. However, if Mendosa says the book is good, I'm sure it is. Hinkes' specialty is diabetes as it affects the legs and feet. I think you should get the book.

 

My own leg problems have consisted of neuropathy (when the skin on my right leg fell asleep), pain in my right ankle which increases when I eat sweets, and swelling in my ankles. Those symptoms have improved since I got my BS readings under 200 (and exercising helps).

 

Why does this site block URLs? I inserted a URL to Mendosa's site. I don't like censorship.

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I inserted a URL to Mendosa's site/QUOTE]

 

I just took a look at what Mendosa has to offer... what a great resource !

 

Thanks for telling me about him :)

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