How to take care of your leg if you get diabetes

“Dis diabetes bin make me dey piss too much and before I go reach toilet, piss don come out, dis na part of di problem wey pesin dey get if e get diabetes wey dem no treat well.”  

Na wetin 52-year-old Osarenkhoe Ethel Chima-Nwogwugwu tok be dis as she share how she take deal wit type 2 diabetes.

Nwogwugwu tell BBC Pidgin say her tori wit diabetes start wen she get di belle of her second pikin.

According to di mother of five girls, she bin start treatment wen dem diagnose am wit gestational diabetes and di disease go six weeks afta she born di pikin.

She say wen she dey pregnant wit her third pikin, di diabetes come again. Di woman say dem treat di disease again and e leave am six weeks afta di birth of her third pikin.

“But six months afta I born dat pikin, na im my sugar level come go up, na im I go hospital and dem tell me say I don get type 2 diabetes o. Na how my story for diabetes take start. As e start, na dat journey I dey for 21 years.”

Nwogwu say she bin dey plan her wedding wen diabetes wey dey affect leg kill her mama.

Now, she say di too much piss mata wey bin dey worry her don go patapata. She say e no easy, but her doctors, nurse and dietician join hands togeda to educate am and her family also support am to battle di disease.

Nwogwu add say to take care of diabetes dey very expensive and to get doctors wey dey take care of pipo living wit diabetes no dey easy.

She also tok about di importance of caring for di legs well-well and advise pipo wey dey live wit diabetes to do di same.

“I dey wear di right shoes. If you see me wia I dey bounce at 52 you go tink say I be omoge, you go say dis babe dey o becos I dey wear sneakers, I dey wear am for native and anytin becos na my leg na im dey very important.”

“Pesin wey get wound, no tink say na death sentence, say e no go heal, e go heal, abeg make you quick go hospital. Massage your leg well-well, dey clean am well well. Always check your leg first tin in di morning wen you wake up.”

‘Diabetes fit make dem amputate your legs’

One medical expert wey follow BBC Pidgin tok say diabetes na leading cause of non-traumatic lower limb amputation.

She say 50 to 60 percent of pipo wey go hospital to complain of foot ulcer go end up wit amputation sake of say dem no quick present dia case.

Di medical practitioner say anybodi wey dey live wit diabetes need to get good glycaemic control sake of say complication dey come up wen di glycaemic control dey bad.

“Make sure say your HbA1c, your fasting blood sugar dey di target wey your doctor don set for you,” she tok.

She advise say make pipo wey dey live wit diabetes dey examine dia feet on regular basis. But she say di frequency go depend weda di pesin dey at very low risk or higher risk of amputation.

Di expert say pipo wey dey at higher risk of amputation dey expected to examine dia feet more often dan pipo wey dey at low risk.

‘How to examine your feet’

Dr Afokoghene Rita Isiavwe wey be Consultant Endocrinologist tok about how pesin fit examine dia feet.

She say na by feeling di temperature of di feet, checking di nails, checking in between di toes to make sure say discolouration or wound no dey.

“And den look for any deformities too, sake of say dis deformities fit be sign of future ulcer,” di expert tok.

She say pipo wey dey live wit diabetes no suppose dey use blade to cut dia nails sake of say dem fit go use am give diasef wound.

She say na cut dey cause 85 percent of amputation and instead of using razor blade, make pipo wey dey live wit diabetes dey use nail file, nail cutter or nail nipper.

“If you dey walk for slippery environment and di soles of your shoe smooth, you fit slip and fall down, and dat na anoda accident,” she tok.

She also recommend shoes wey get wide toe boxes and wey no get any sharp object wey fit injure dem.

Di expert say anyone wey dey wear socks sake of cold need to try dia shoe wit dia socks on before dem buy am, and add say knowledge na power if pesin dey live wit diabetes.