Diabetes and foot pain

I was diagnosed with type 2 diabetes about six years ago and my doctor found that I have diabetic neuropathy. It started with my feet hurting with a sharp pain in the arch of my foot. The only way I can describe it is that it feels like something is inside my foot with a nail. The pain is awful which happens a few times and then it disappears. My wife has researched it online and has found a naturopathic wellness centre in Mississauga. The pain has become excruciating. I would like to know from anyone who has experienced it and how you got rid of the trouble. Thank you.

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I’ve had neuropathy in my feet but it just involved a slight numbness in my toes. However, this spring I was in Sicily walking on cobblestone streets when it felt like I had pebbles in my sneakers. I stopped at a cafe, undid the laces, and removed shoe but nothing was there. Pain abated and occurred another 2 times but that was the end of it. Blsmed it on cheaper brand of sneaks.
It wasn’t until a few months ago that I saw a commercial about diabetic foot pain and it slowly dawned on me that that was what I had experienced.
It is a very unpleasant pain and hope not to experience it again.

I have severe neuropathy in both my hands and my feet. I was undiagnosed for what appears to be about 10 years. By the time I got my diagnosis the pain was 24 seven and quite uncomfortable even when I was trying to sleep. I had to travel’s and my shoes, socks rolling up under my toes, pins and needles, nails and hammers and that was just my feet. My hands had similar issues and it got to the point where could not even buttoned shirt. All of this, all of it became much worse when I rapidly decrease my blood sugar levels. But, the only hope any of the doctors gave me to solve this problem or even slow it down was to do just that. So with the A1c of 12.3 in October I brought it down to 5.6 in February. Then things really started to hurt. I can’t even begin to describe how painful it was just being in my body. I have a very high tolerance for pain but it was getting to the point that I wasn’t sure I could take much more.It was not until about mid August that I began to feel that there was some positive change and that my pain was decreasing both in severity and frequency. Not that it was gone by any means but I could begin to function again.

Today all these pains are pretty much gone. I still have some momentary issues with stabbing pains and cramps in both my feet and hands. But they are only 1/10 as an chance and not even on a daily basis. My ongoing daily issue now is simply the numbness the stiffness. When I started working on this none of my doctors gave me any hope that I could reverse the problems. The best they would do is tell me that maybe I could slow it down. Well, I have reversed all of it but I’m not holding my breath that it will ever be entirely gone or that I will ever be able to function completely normally again.

So here’s my advice. If you are having any of these pains and think it might be anything else don’t waste your time buying new shoes or inserts like I did. Stay on top of your blood sugars. Watch them like a hawk. You do not want this to become your way of life. I have several other complications as well and I can tell you this was all honesty and all sincerity if all I had to do every day was control my blood sugar then I could honestly say that diabetes really didn’t change me or my life all that much. I was complications that’s not the case. In dealing with the complications makes dealing with my blood sugar like watching cartoons on Saturday morning.

DO everything in your power NOT to develop complications. And address them immediately when you recognize them like you have stated above.


sorry for some of the typos in funky wording. This is my first lives attempted with voice recognition software and I guess it misunderstood me a few times but I’m sure you got the idea clearly enough.

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It is my understanding improving numbers will help. Do you see a diabetic experienced podiatrist? Always wear something on your feet . I hope you find the assistance you need. Nancy

Hi have been diagnosed recently with neurothopy. In uk they mainly give painkillers for this eg dulcetine or tramadol. Mine is mixture of pins and needles, hot,cold, numbness and pain. Keeps me awake in the night.

Tight BG control should help reduce neuropathy symptoms over time. Personally, my neuropathy became so painful that I couldn’t work any longer (I had a very physical job). I was put on Gabapentin to help with the symptoms but it didn’t even touch the pain, but sedated me so much I could barely function.

I was just put on Cymbalta less than a week ago and I will shout from the rooftops that I am almost back to my old self again. It has almost completely stopped all my pain! and it has helped to ease my mild depression. I thought it was going to take weeks or even months before I saw any improvement, but it only took days!

I’m sure medication is different for everyone, but I’m just glad I agreed to try the Cymbalta. It works really well for me. I hope over time it continues to work and I don’t get any side effects.


Hi, my husband has neuropathy that sounds almost as bad as yours was, but he’s never had an A1C over 5.6. (He did flunk the 2 hour glucose tolerance test so he certainly has diabetic tendencies). How do you measure your glucose control now – home monitoring, or just A1C? Do you use pain meds like gabapentin or nortryptilin?

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I am 25 and already have neuropathy in both my feet/legs for the past 4yrs. Feels like a consent deep dull ache or a Prussia in my heel like standing on a hard rock or a sudden sharp pain … I’ve tried all the meds and they don’t help just cause worse problems I am now left with trying acupuncture tomorrow to see if that helps

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Hello, I am new to this site and just found this topic. I have had type 2 for going on two years now and have been experiencing a burning feeling on the bottom of my feet lately and also feel like I need to move keep moving them. Does anyone else have this feeling in their feet? Could this be related to neuropathy? My BG is well controlled.

Hi, @LSS
Welcome to the club no one wants to join, as many of us say here.

I have read in other threads about two types of sensations, both attributed to neuropathy:

Burning and
Pins and needles.

Others have said they feel one when BG is rising, and the other when it is falling.

My personal experience is numbness and burning when high. I feel that restlessness too, and it’s usually a sign I need to go on a brisk walk or move for at least 10-15 minutes.

I also get pins and needles when dropping –
Specifically for me when dropping through the 90s.

You can get more feedback of what you are going thru if you are using a CGM to check your level when you are experiencing these symptoms. Or you can test, test, test.

Keep looking into what is going on so you gain in your knowledge of how to manage your diabetes.

Another saying frequently used here:
"Your Diabetes May Vary"

Because everyone has a unique situation despite similar diagnoses. And despite levels of control.


Hi LADA_lady thanks for your reply. I have a doctors appointment tomorrow with my primary care so I will make sure to mention this to her. I didn’t think I would have any type of possible complications yet since I have not been considered diabetic for very long (2 yrs) and my BG has been controlled pretty well, although I have been battling pre-diabetes on and off for several years prior. Is there anything that seems to work for the burning sensation that you have tried other than getting your BG more normal?

Keep speaking with your doctor, and ask for more information.

I am newly diagnosed, T1, but I was undiagnosed and actively diabetic several years prior. My a1c at diagnosis was 15.9, so my BGs were very out of control for an extended period of time. With insulin, and low carb diet and exercise, my six month a1c was down to 5.3.

But the years out of control is contributing to the continuing neuropathy.

I have heard that truly normalizing the BG will lessen, or reduce it. Hasn’t happened yet for me. I refuse to use meds, but I have occasionally tried electrical stimulation on the bottoms of my feet. It helps for the evening.

The thing is, even though my a1c is greatly improved, my feet are telling me otherwise. So I am still seeking answers for myself.

And as both T1 and T2 are progressive conditions, I am always curious about what I am experiencing, and what others are too.

All I can say, is, if you don’t get the answers you need – ask it a different way, or ask it of another person: a specialist or CDE, if you do not have one yet.

And the people of this forum are a great resource. And fun to converse with.

Good luck tomorrow!

Hi Lada_lady thanks for sharing what has happened with you. It is nice to hear from others about their experience and what they have tried to help them. I did have my doctors appointment and asked lots of questions about my feet. She told me that my symptoms are a sign of neuropathy and told me to try a supplement called ALA. It works for a lot of people to stop the neuropathy pains and delay the need for medication, which I am all for. I asked her if diabetes would progress even with good BG control and unfortunantely she said yes, but not as quickly. My A1C was 5.9 this time so am still doing good with keeping it down.

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I had to symptoms on diagnosis; however, once I got my BG under control, I started having pain or pins and needles in my feet. At the time, I panicked, but my doctor said it was probably due to nerves that had begun to get damage prior to diagnosis – and the pain was actually a sign of those nerves “waking up” and healing. I suppose he was right, because the problem went away after a month or so, and I still have full feeling in my feet - pain-free.


Thanks Thas for sharing… That would be nice if this was a passing phase for me. It is so weird because the bottom of my feet don’t seem to burn during the day while at work, it is not till I am home and settling in that I feel the burning in my feet. Maybe I just don’t notice it in the day time because I am busy with work and other things.

I hope it is in fact short-term for you. Only time will tell. I’ve also heard that some people find that taking B12 helps with neuropathy pain. Some others have said Vitamin D. Talk to your doctor, but it probably wouldn’t hurt (no pun intended!) to try either or both of those.

That is funny that you mention both the B12 and Vitamin D. It happens that I have an over abundance of the B12 and low Vitamin D. Can’t seem to get the Vitamin D up even with supliments. Wonder if that could be adding to the foot burning. My primary care doctor just told me to take a supplement called ALA said that it helps a lot of people with the neuropathy pain so I will be trying that.

I use the following method to raise the Vitamin D levels of my Vitamin D-deficient patients:

Once-weekly doses of 50,000 I.U. of Vitamin D3 (NOT Vitamin D2, which can counterintuitively lower one’s Vitamin D level) for 8 weeks followed by 1,000 to 3,000 I.U. of Vitamin D3 per day ongoing.

Disclaimer: Do not take this as medical advice. Always consult with your physician first.

And don’t forget that it is entirely possible to overdose on the fat-soluble Vitamins (A, D, E, and K) to the point of seriously and permanently damaging one’s liver.

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Thanks I will try that.