What Are Diabetic Shoes?
By Dr. Jeffrey Frederick
April 02, 2013
Category: Diabetes

Many diabetic patients come to their first foot screening appointment already knowing they are supposed to wear “diabetic shoes” – but what exactly are “diabetic shoes?”  What makes a shoe a safe option for patients with diabetes centers on the principle of pressure distribution.  When the foot is exposed to increased amounts of pressure, the skin can breakdown.  Increased friction or rubbing in the shoes tends to occur around areas of deformity, such as on the top of a hammertoe, or at a bunion.  Pressure points can also be the result of a loss of normal foot anatomy, such as when a toe or portion of the foot must be amputated.

Fitting for diabetic shoes allows for a close fit, even for the most uniquely shaped feet.  Impressions of the feet are taken using a foam box or other similar method and sent along with specific measurements of the patient’s feet.  The company uses this personal information with the style selected by the patient to develop a pair of shoes that are both comfortable and protective.

Diabetic shoes have a wide and deep toebox, which allows for increased space for the forefoot.  The shoes are also made mostly from natural materials like leather that conform well to the contour of the foot without losing function.  Diabetic shoes have a rigid structure to provide support yet allow for motion at essential points.  The shoes typically come with multiple pairs of specialized accommodative insoles, which reduce shear forces on the bottom of the feet.  These insoles can be changed every three months to ensure the fit of the shoe.  Certain patients may qualify for yearly prescriptions for custom diabetic shoegear as it has a direct impact on reducing ulcerations and therefore surgeries involved with diabetic foot infections.  Ask your podiatrist for more information if you are interested in learning more.

Thank you for visiting our website!  Please continue to learn more about your foot care needs by reading other informative articles and by visiting our helpful links.  NorthPointe Foot & Ankle is located in Berkley, MI and has been serving people around the Southfield, Berkley, Ferndale, and Royal Oak area for over 30 years.  Request an appointment via our website or call our office at (248) 545-0100.