We use cookies to so our web site can function correctly. By Clicking "OK" or by clicking into any content on this site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. To find out more visit the cookies section of our privacy policy.

Privacy Statement

A cookie is a small file which asks permission to be placed on your computer's hard drive. Once you agree, the file is added and the cookie helps analyse web traffic or lets you know when you visit a particular site. Cookies allow web applications to respond to you as an individual. The web application can tailor its operations to your needs, likes and dislikes by gathering and remembering information about your preferences.

We use traffic log cookies to identify which pages are being used. This helps us analyse data about web page traffic and improve our website in order to tailor it to customer needs. We only use this information for statistical analysis purposes.

Overall, cookies help us provide you with a better website, by enabling us to monitor which pages you find useful and which you do not. A cookie in no way gives us access to your computer or any information about you, other than the data you choose to share with us.

Cookie group mandatory

(Req)
These cookies are necessary for the website to function and cannot be switched off in our systems. They are usually only set in response to actions made by you which amount to a request for services, such as setting your privacy preferences, logging in or filling in forms.
You can set your browser to block or alert you about these cookies, but some parts of the site will not then work. These cookies do not store any personally identifiable information.

These cookies are required

Functional

These cookies allow us to adtertise our products to you and allow us to pass this information on to our trusted third parties so that they can advertise our products to you on our behalf
All information these cookies collect is aggregated and therefore anonymous. No personal inforation is shared to third parties. Any personal information collected while using our website could be used for direct marketing from HCA only

Marketing

These cookies allow us to advertise our products to you and allow us to pass this information on to our trusted third parties so that they can advertise our products to you on our behalf
All information these cookies collect is aggregated and therefore anonymous. No personal inforation is shared to third parties. Any personal information collected while using our website could be used for direct marketing from HCA only

Performance Cookies

These cookies allow us to know which pages are the most and least popular and see how visitors move around the site.  All information collect is annonomas unless you provide personal information to us.
If you do not allow these cookies we will not know when you have visited our site, and will not be able to monitor its performance.

Diabetes

Type 1 and type 2 diabetes and diabetic foot

Diabetes is a chronic condition that causes glucose in your blood to become too high. It can also cause foot problems.

Health Fact vs Fiction Diabetes explained | Podcast

Listen now to episode 13 'Diabetes Explained' of the Health Fact vs Fiction podcast from HCA Healthcare UK. In this episode Anna Richardson talks to Dr Alex Miras, Consultant Endocrinologist, about diabetes and the personal measures we can take to prevent, manage and even reverse it through metabolic surgery.

About

Diabetes is a serious, lifelong condition. There are two main types of diabetes as well as some rarer ones. They all cause the level of glucose (sugar) in people’s blood to become too high. With type one diabetes, insulin-producing cells are attacked by the immune system and with type 2 diabetes, not enough insulin is produced by the body.

Need to know

  • Symptoms of diabetes icon plus

    The hormone insulin is made by the pancreas and controls your blood sugar levels by shifting glucose from the blood into our cells. Here, it’s broken down to give us energy. If you have diabetes, this process doesn’t work and the body can’t convert glucose into energy.

    The main symptoms associated with diabetes are:

    • feeling very thirsty
    • urinating more than usual, especially at night
    • extreme tiredness
    • losing weight
    • itching around the genitals, or infections like thrush
    • slow healing cuts

    If you experience a range of these symptoms it’s important to see a consultant as soon as possible, as type 1 diabetes can develop quickly.

  • Diagnosis icon plus

    Diagnosing both types of diabetes usually involves:
    • blood tests to check blood sugar levels
    • urine tests

    Over time, high glucose levels in your blood can lead to complications in your kidneys, heart, eyes and feet. People with diabetes are at much greater risk of foot disease and foot ulcers. This is because diabetes can cause nerve damage known as diabetic neuropathy.

    Signs of foot problems in diabetes include:

    • swollen feet
    • numbness or tingling sensations
    • loss of feeling
    • sores that don’t heal

    Your consultant will look for these signs and develop a personalised care plan if they detect any foot problems developing.
  • Potential treatment options icon plus

    Type 1 diabetes

    If you have type 1 diabetes you need to take insulin by injecting with an insulin pen or using an insulin pump. Other treatment includes incretin memetics (medication that helps the body to produce insulin when it’s needed).

    Type 2 diabetes

    If you have type 2 diabetes you may need to take insulin or medication such as metformin. This is the first line drug in the management of the condition. Diet and exercise can also be instrumental in keeping blood sugar levels under control.


    More recently metabolic surgery, which changes the anatomy of the gastrointestinal tract, has been proven to be a powerful treatment for type 2 diabetes. This is a NICE approved surgical option (using bariatric procedures) for individuals with Type 2 Diabetes and obesity. Performed laparoscopically, (keyhole surgery), the procedure alters metabolic function to improve glycaemic control, and 50% of patients become diabetes-free. The benefits include a reduction in medication usage, a lowering of cardiovascular disease risk, greater weight loss and ultimately a better quality of life. For more information visit London Bridge Hospital’s Metabolic and Bariatric Centre. 

    Diabetic foot

    Treatment for diabetic foot disease may include:

    • offloading (a plaster cast is used to take the pressure off and help with healing)
    • clearing away any dead, damaged and infected skin (debridement)
    • vascular surgery to ensure the foot has adequate blood supply
    • In severe cases, orthopaedic surgery to reconstruct ‘diabetic foot’ is now effective and at preventing the need for amputation

Consultant in theatres

Our consultants

We're proud to work with leading experts across a range of medical fields, whose skills are matched by their integrity and compassion.

Our facilities

From complex surgery to straightforward procedures, we provide exceptional care across our network of hospitals, outpatient centres and specialist clinics.

This content is intended for general information only and does not replace the need for personal advice from a qualified health professional.
back to top