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How Poor Circulation Can Affect the Feet

Tuesday, 29 March 2022 00:00

Do your feet feel cold—even when it is not cold outside— or numb? Have you noticed that your feet look white, red, blue, or purple at times? If so, you may have poor circulation in your feet. This condition develops when the blood vessels that deliver a steady supply of oxygen and nutrients to the feet through blood constrict or harden. Other symptoms of poor circulation include a loss of hair on the feet or legs, foot or ankle wounds that have trouble healing, cracked or dry skin, and weak toenails. Poor circulation in the feet may be caused by various underlying conditions. Raynaud’s disease can cause spasms in blood vessels and a decrease in the amount of blood to the toes. Constricting blood vessels can sometimes be attributed to acrocyanosis, which may turn the toes blue and make your skin feel cold and clammy. Many people with diabetes suffer from poor circulation due to elevated blood sugar levels. This is particularly dangerous, as this condition can make it difficult for the diabetic to detect wounds. High blood pressure can lead to arteriosclerosis, which can cause arteries to harden and restrict blood flow. Peripheral artery disease (PAD) is a buildup of plaque in the arteries, which also restricts blood flow. If you are experiencing any of the symptoms described here, it is suggested that you make an appointment as soon as possible with a podiatrist.

Poor circulation is a serious condition and needs immediate medical attention. If you have any concerns with poor circulation in your feet contact one of our podiatrists of The Podiatry Center. Our doctors will treat your foot and ankle needs.

Poor Circulation in the Feet

Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs is can be caused by peripheral artery disease (PAD), which is the result of a buildup of plaque in the arteries.

Plaque buildup or atherosclerosis results from excess calcium and cholesterol in the bloodstream. This can restrict the amount of blood which can flow through the arteries. Poor blood circulation in the feet and legs are sometimes caused by inflammation in the blood vessels, known as vasculitis.

Causes

Lack of oxygen and oxygen from poor blood circulation restricts muscle growth and development. It can also cause:

  • Muscle pain, stiffness, or weakness   
  • Numbness or cramping in the legs 
  • Skin discoloration
  • Slower nail & hair growth
  • Erectile dysfunction

Those who have diabetes or smoke are at greatest risk for poor circulation, as are those who are over 50. If you have poor circulation in the feet and legs it may be caused by PAD and is important to make changes to your lifestyle in order to reduce risk of getting a heart attack or stroke. Exercise and maintaining a healthy lifestyle will dramatically improve conditions.

As always, see a podiatrist as he or she will assist in finding a regimen that suits you. A podiatrist can also prescribe you any needed medication. 

If you have any questions please feel free to contact one of our offices located in Richmond and Glen Allen, VA . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.

Read more about Causes Symptoms and Treatment for Poor Circulation in the Feet
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