These factors increase your chance of developing a foot ulcer. Tell your doctor if you have any of these risk factors:
- Sores, ulcers, or blisters on the foot or lower leg
- Walking with difficulty
- Discoloration in feet: black, blue, or red
- Cold feet
- Swollen foot or ankle
- Fever, skin redness or swelling, or other signs of infection
Your doctor will ask about your symptoms and medical history, and perform a physical exam. Your primary doctor may refer you to a foot specialist or podiatrist.
Tests may include the following:
- Wound culture to determine if an infection is present
- X-ray —a test that uses radiation to take a picture of structures inside the body, especially bones; to determine if there is evidence of infection in the bones ( osteomyelitis )
- CT scan —a type of x-ray that uses a computer to make pictures of structures inside the body; to evaluate a suspected pocket of pus called an abscess
- MRI scan —a test that uses magnetic waves to make pictures of structures inside the body; to evaluate a suspected pocket of pus called an abscess
- Doppler or arteriographic studies —to assess for adequate blood flow to feet, which is necessary for healing
- Blood glucose and glycohemoglobin test
- Complete blood count to determine if there is an infection—A high white blood cell count may mean that there is an infection.