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Foot Ulcers in a Person with Diabetes

Medically reviewed by Last updated on Apr 2, 2024.

What is a foot ulcer?

A foot ulcer can be redness over a bony area or an open sore. The ulcer can develop anywhere on your foot or toes. Ulcers usually develop on the bottom of the foot. You may not know you have an ulcer until you notice drainage on your sock. Drainage is fluid that may be yellow, brown, or red. The fluid may also contain pus or blood.

Foot Ulcers

What increases my risk for a foot ulcer?

How is a foot ulcer diagnosed and treated?

Your healthcare provider will ask about your symptoms and examine your foot and the ulcer. Your provider may check your shoes. The goal of treatment is to start healing your foot ulcer as soon as possible. The risk for infection decreases with faster healing. Do the following to help the ulcer heal:

What can I do to prevent foot ulcers?

Good foot care may help prevent ulcers, or keep them from getting worse. Ask someone to help you if you are not able to check or care for your feet. The following can help you prevent foot ulcers:

Treatment options

The following list of medications are related to or used in the treatment of this condition.

View more treatment options

Call your local emergency number (911 in the US) if:

When should I seek immediate care?

When should I call my doctor?

Care Agreement

You have the right to help plan your care. Learn about your health condition and how it may be treated. Discuss treatment options with your healthcare providers to decide what care you want to receive. You always have the right to refuse treatment. The above information is an educational aid only. It is not intended as medical advice for individual conditions or treatments. Talk to your doctor, nurse or pharmacist before following any medical regimen to see if it is safe and effective for you.

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Always consult your healthcare provider to ensure the information displayed on this page applies to your personal circumstances.