Suffering from Diabetes? Don’t neglect the signs your skin is showing

If you are suffering from diabetes, chances are you might get Acanthosis Nigricans, Diabetic Blisters, Diabetic Dermopathy or Digital Sclerosis, Vitiligo, Necrobiosis Lipoidica Diabeticorum and Eruptive Xanthomatosis.

Check out the 8 most common Diabetes-related skin conditions, their causes, symptoms, and treatments:

1. Acanthosis Nigricans

A gradually progressing skin condition, Acanthosis Nigricans causes folds or creases, which eventually turns into a dark, thick, and velvet-textured skin and is a telling sign of diabetes. It is sometimes inherited, but usually triggered by high insulin levels it occurs at any age and usually strikes obese people. While there is no treatment for this condition, you can reduce insulin levels or apply prescription creams to lighten the affected area.

2. Diabetic Blisters

These are rare blisters affecting your hands, toes, feet, or forearms. Diabetic Blisters are often caused as a result of diabetic neuropathy. It is important not to rupture the blisters. We recommend you book an appointment with one of our dermatologists.

3. Diabetic Dermopathy

Symptoms include round, brown, or purple scaly patches on the front of the legs (most often the shins) resembling age spots. Affecting people who have been suffering from diabetes for decades, this condition is harmless and is caused by changes in small blood vessels. It requires no medical intervention however it is slow to heal.

4. Digital Sclerosis

Common symptoms include thick, waxy, and tight skin on toes, fingers, and hands, which also causes stiffness in the digits. Normalising your blood glucose levels can help alleviate this skin condition.

5. Disseminated Granuloma Annulare

If you’re diabetic and you’ve spotted a red or reddish-brown rash, which looks like a bull’s eye on your fingers, toes or ears, chances are that it is Disseminated Granuloma Annulare. Even though it is not serious, please consult your dermatologist if you’re planning on taking steroid medications to eliminate the rash.

6. Eruptive Xanthomatosis

Watch out for itchy, round spots with a red halo that appear on the hands, feet, arms, legs or buttocks of diabetic patients, often triggered by high triglycerides. Keeping your blood sugar levels normal can cure this condition.

7. Necrobiosis Lipoidica Diabeticorum

Compared to Diabetic Dermopathy, these itchy or painful spots are larger, fewer, and deeper in the skin, have a shiny texture, and are active or inactive in cycles. They are often caused by changes in collagen and fat underneath the skin with women three times more susceptible to this condition than men. Typically, topical steroids usually help however in chronic cases cortisone injections are required to treat his condition.

8. Vitiligo

Symptoms include white patches that can occur anywhere on the skin usually affecting skin that’s most exposed to the sun. It also appears in body folds, near moles, or in places where there was a previous skin injury. The diabetic condition is permanent and there is no known cure or prevention. Some treatments like steroid creams and ultraviolet light therapy can help improve the appearance of the skin.

If you are Diabetic and think your skin is showing any of the above symptoms, please book an appointment to consult any of our dermatologists at the Derma One Centre in Manama, Bahrain today.