How do you contend with these huge monster shoes they prescribe for diabetics? I am a Type 2, “not very” diabetic - my A1C was 9.1 four years ago when I went to Kaiser with an infected big toe. I wasn’t allowed to go home, they put me in the hospital and amputated it.
Within 6 months, my A1C was 5.3 and has never been higher than that for 3 years. I take no medication whatsoever, just follow a low carb diet. But my feet and legs have been an ongoing problem. First I had Diabetic Amytrophic Neuropathy. I know, no one has heard of that, including half the doctors I deal with. The result of that was wasting of leg muscles and advanced neuropathy to the point where I was in a wheelchair for 6 months. I worked my way back up to being ambulatory. The muscles still don’t work like they’re supposed to, but I can lurch along and get where I’m going. EXCEPT I was told to wear these special shoes that last belonged to Frankenstein to protect my feet.
I wear a 9.5. These are size 11, so there is enough room for my toes, they say. With my diminished leg muscles, I have to turn my toes out to the side and waddle. I can walk barefoot pretty well, and actually feel it’s better for my feet because they have contact with the floor, there is sensory stimulation.
I have had continued problems with my feet, even inside the shoes from hell. There is a callus that grows over the scar where the toe was removed. The podiatrist insists on trimming it down to the skin once a month because I’m “diabetic, and the callus could crack and become infected.” I haven’t had a problem with sores on my feet since my blood sugar has been under control. If I did, I’d probably have infections from the podiatrist hacking on my feet and toes constantly.
I never used to have hammer toes. Now I do on the foot with no big toe. They say it’s because my balance is bad and I use my toes to grip. The podiatrist wants to cut the tendons in at least 2 of those toes to straighten them out. Then what will I grip with? I don’t try to grip when I’m barefoot, only when I have the big shoes on because I’m afraid I’ll fall down.
And I’m afraid of that because it has happened often enough to be a problem. I’ve tried discussing this with the podiatrist. He only sees me when I’m already in the chair. He does not talk about gait or shoes, he says that’s the shoe expert’s responsibility. The shoe guy says he just gives me what the doctor prescribes.
I’m totally willing and able to take care of my own shoe requirements, but I don’t know where to start. What do the rest of you do?