How can atherosclerosis affect me if I have diabetes?

Advertisement
Advertisement
Atherosclerosis is a thickening of the arteries that can affect the skin on the legs. People with diabetes tend to get atherosclerosis at younger ages than other people do.

As atherosclerosis narrows the blood vessels, the skin changes. It becomes hairless, thin, cool, and shiny. The toes become cold. Toenails thicken and discolor. And exercise causes pain in the calf muscles because the muscles are not getting enough oxygen.

Because blood carries the infection-fighting white cells, affected legs heal slowly when the skin is injured. Even minor scrapes can result in open sores that heal slowly.

Continue Learning about Vascular Disease

Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.