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From Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA:

My 14 year old son, who has had diabetes for seven years and has an A1c of 8.5%, came home the other night complaining of burning feet. Upon inspection, the balls of his feet appear raised (bumpy) and red. The pediatrician called it "burning feet syndrome", said that it is caused by some sort of bacteria that grow in sneakers, and the treatment for this typically would be Cipro which they don't prescribe that to folks under 18. Can you give me any further information? Could this have been caused by my son's continual problems controlling his blood sugar?


It would be strange under these circumstances to have neuropathy, and the visual signs of infection on the feet make it more likely it is the shoes. There are reports of pseudomonas infections acquired from water (pools) and spas that cause an eruption and the "burning feet syndrome".


[Editor's comment: This condition is most frequently caused by shoes that are too tight, although it can also appear following foot injuries for no apparent reason. In most cases, switching to shoes with a wider toe box and using an orthotic device to cushion the area will relieve the condition. SS]

Original posting 22 Oct 2001
Posted to Complications


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Last Updated: Tuesday April 06, 2010 15:09:26
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