Swollen toe

Hi all

I had mentioned previously that I have problems with circulation. My toes and fingers get numb at times and at times get discolored, occasionally my toes got swollen; my father had a similar problem. My doctor and my cardiologist both said it was nothing to worry about and just to keep them warm, which I do with fingerless gloves at home and warm warm socks. I had concluded it was nothing diabetes related. They generally have good feeling and I can bring them back when they get numb by warming them or putting them in hot water.

But now one of my toes is pretty permanently swollen and it hurts. I'm seeing my cardiologist on 1/15 but thought I'd put it up here. Anyone else had a similar issue? I'm hoping it is just more of the non-problematic circulation problem, but the ongoing swelling worries me a tad.


Have you seen a foot doc? I wonder if you may have gout.

Hmmm. I looked up gout but didn't get a clear sense one way or the other if that is what it could be. Thanks, Karen. It's only been like this a few days and the way it was before neither my cardiologist or pcp seemed concerned. I'll ask my cardiologist if he thinks I should see a podiatrist.

I like using a podiatrist because that's their specialty. I've always had good experiences with them. Last year I had foot pain and suspected gout but the podiatrist diagnosed plantar fasciitis. I had pain in my big toes, but no swelling, and also pain in my heels. I got great relief from a round of physical therapy that he recommended.

Good luck with this new issue. With my foot problems earlier this year, I realized that my ability to walk drives my overall BG control and ultimate health.

You may be better off to go sooner rather than later. The people I know who have gout report that it escalates and, when it gets bad, it's *really* unpleasant. Whenever I've had any foot issues, the docs all recommend going to a podiatrist and approve coming in to get things looked at. I would get any toe or foot issue explored sooner rather than waiting a couple of weeks. I've seen quite a few cases, that are classified, where things can take a different sort of turn so I don't take any chances with my feet, other than wearing sandals.

Sigh. I've been hoping not to add another doctor visit right now. I have a cardiologist on 1/15 (no stress-routine) and a colonoscopy on 2/7 (stressful). But if you two suggest it I think I'll listen to your advice. I just called the three podiatrists in the larger town over the mountain from me to see if I could schedule it next week on my way back from the Bay area. All three are on vacation until Thursday. It seems like this year has been the worst for all kinds of business coming to a halt for two straight weeks!

hmmm, sorry I did not actually "suggest" the foot doc. Sheesh, I will start the new year feeling like chopped liver! I agree with the other two. My feet are my main way of travel, I would not be able to wait two weeks.

I'd also recommend seeing a podiatrist. I've had all kinds of foot issues for years because of flat feet, and I just started seeing a podiatrist a few months ago (only seen him twice so far). Right away he said the custom orthotics I'd had made at a sports medicine place were "too simple" for what I needed. The ones he had made work so much better for me! Still have some ankle pain, but he said we'd start with orthotics and go from there, so I'll mention it to him when I see him in January.

Getting these things checked out sooner rather than later is definitely better. Even if it's nothing serious, at least you'll have that peace of mind. And, as others mentioned, it could be the type of problem that's much easier to treat in its early stages and not so easy later on down the road. I also have a lot of doctor appointments in January - gastroenterologist, ophthalmologist, endocrinologist, podiatrist - but I figure I'll get them all out of the way at once and then have no other appointments for a few months, hopefully!

Thanks Karen and Jen. Yikes, I would hate to have that many doctor appointments. I get pretty stressed out by going to doctors. I'm not stressed out over what many people are: worrying that something horrible is wrong with me, I rarely go there. I'm not even stressed out about possible painful procedures. It's just all the peripheral stuff: Having to drive over the mountain and in winter worry if the weather will be bad (I stress a lot about that!), what it is they will do to me (generalized illogical fear), dealing with rude staff or staff who don't listen, or have their own agenda. Hmmm...none of this explanation seems to be adding up to much! I guess just things I don't have control of and spending too much time thinking about medical stuff! My colonoscopy is a step higher on the stress scale due to having to stay over two days, not being able to eat, gross prep, gross procedure, not being myself due to meds and needing assistance. And yes, a bit of anxiety as to what my symptoms indicate.

People have life threatening and dangerous surgery's and illnesses all the time. I really have nothing to complain about. I guess I don't like having so many things wrong with me even if they're small. And next semester will be more stressful/busy than usual for me. And managing D 24/7 which I rarely mind at all, seems to make my frustration tolerance way lower.

Whew - where did all that come from? Thanks guys, for recommending I deal with it. I generally am not one to worry or run to a doctor for everything but I can go too far in the other direction. (Especially since I discovered how little they know about the major thing wrong with me T1).

So thanks....I think.

To be honest I put off a lot of problems/symptoms before getting them checked out because I generally hate going to the doctor. I also have white coat hypertension and tachycardia every time I go (and every time I'm in a hospital, even if I'm just visiting people), so I think it's more of a subconscious thing for me. My dad once said that I react like that because I was born premature and spent months in the ICU right after I was born. I thought that was really interesting and in my case may be true. But I think a lot of people are stressed out around doctors ... for me it's also partly concerns about communication and whether the doctor and I are on the same page. When we are on the same page it's a great thing (almost no matter the diagnosis), but when I feel like we're not communicating or not on the same page or my concerns are being ignored, it's horrible even if it's a relatively minor medical concern.

And I hear you about having so many little problems! That's been like the story of my life ever since I was young! I'm sure by the time I'm a senior I will have a very interesting medical history. It no longer bothers me that much when something new crops up, although I'm sure if I were diagnosed with an imminently life-threatening issue I might feel differently, I just sort of wait in curiosity about the next thing that will come along. I also hate any procedure where I'll be knocked out. I had an endoscopy a few months ago and the fact that I would be knocked out was the thing I was most worried about!

I hope your appointments and procedures go well and come up with good results!

Me too, I used to try to just "live with stuff". I learned my lesson one year when I ignored a symptom - nothing to do with diabetes and am lucky to be here today. Turned out the more I ignored it the more dangerous it progressed. One thing my doctor reminded me as she made way to be admitted to the hospital is "Pain, swelling, itching, etc. are not normal. If you can't identify the cause, and home remedy does not correct, then see the doctor."

Ditto what Jen said on all of your appointments, Zoe. They are a hassle for sure, I have a LOT of them. But I go because I have important things to do, people to love, and songs to dance to!

Thanks, Jen, your post was comforting. I certainly can imagine that your infant experience impacts you on a subconscious level, but all the medical things you have dealt with in adulthood seem to have given you a great attitude. I'm sure when you're older you'll take things in stride. I actually had almost no medical concerns until my middle forties and this despite treating my body very poorly. I didn't even have the usual childhood stuff. Sometimes I feel older than my actual age, but then I look around here at the people who share my D, many of whom are decades younger than me. You know how much admiration I have for that!

Yep, me too. I actually used to worry a lot that something really bad would happen. But then I had the experience that it's nothing so often. I have an arrhythmia that can be annoying but I used to think it was an imminent heart attack. Now I've had so many cardiac follow ups and it's never anything so I just settle in. My cardiologist and my pcp had both said that poor circulation was not a big deal. So I go the other direction and even when it gets worse think, "right, Zoe, nothing to worries about". Kind of like a reverse boy who cried wolf..lol

Thanks Sally. I will call the podiatrist on Thursday (all offices are closed for the holidays) and see if they can fit me in on my way back home next Tuesday. If the podiatrists don't have openings (they are specialists, after all and I live in a doctor poor area) I'll see my PCP when I get home next week.

Hi Lots. Thanks, I did that! Happy New Year!

Yep - I was tested for gout when my toes were killing me (turned out to be just plain arthritis), and they do a blood test to check uric acid. Not sure if there are other tests involved, but that's the only one my doctor did, and in my case it was normal.

Hi Zoe -

So this is one of your conditions.. I think I'd rather have a bad cold :-). My brother has gout and his doctors tell him to eat the way you probably eat now. A plant based diet, going easy on the manufactured foods and alcohol. Anyway - good luck with this and may 2014 be a happy and healthy year for you.


Same to you D twin!

Yeah, I think I'd prefer a yearly cold to all these darn conditions

Wow. I just wrote this lengthy post about my weird foot problems and how glad I am you brought this up and then I got distracted by my beloved AllClassical radio station playing the Ode to Joy to usher in the New Year and forgot to hit the add reply button and it's gone. Mmm. Let's see if I can do a less long-winded summary with details to follow:

I, too, have feet and individual toes that hurt in a disabling way. As a dancer of 40 years, I saw my first podiatrist at about age 8 or 9. He was great, BUT all my current one could do was give me a 2-page print out on how to stretch my calves which I have been doing daily for over 50 years. BUT, I have no trouble feeling that little filament neuropathy test.

And I totally agree with Jen. I can't bear the thought of starting a process that will lead to an unbearable number of doc appointments that never solve the problem. Even though they may have good intentions...

I'm thinking circulatory/ arthritis (inflamed muscle sheaths.)...

Phooey. More tomorrow. Gotta do the bed thing...

Our feet are our anchor in the earth. They ground us. They help us define where we are. Don't ever let anybody tell you that our foot issues are not central to our ability to embrace our lives fully.....

Hi Zoe, Sorry about your toe. I would go right away, don't wait because if your toe is not getting what it needs this could be serious. And a podiatrist is a good idea. Do you have raynauds? I get affected by this in my fingers and my podiatrist recently told me it can affect your feet too. Usually you get lack of color though due to the poor circulation but my father who has it more severely than I do sometimes gets purple coloration before going white. I hope you get this figured out soon, we need to take good care of our feet and circulation.