If you notice that your toes look bluish in color, you may have a condition known as peripheral cyanosis. The main causes are a lack of blood reaching the toes, and lack of oxygen in the blood that does reach the toes. Normally, when blood is properly oxygenated it turns bright red. When oxygen levels are low, the blood turns a burgundy, or more bluish, color. However, if the toes are not receiving enough blood, even though it is fully oxygenated, the result is still a bluish color in the toes, and other body parts as well. The main causes of decreased oxygen are a blockage that prevents blood from reaching the extremities, or lack of pressure sufficient to allow the blood to reach the extremities. A fatty buildup in the blood vessels, known as peripheral arterial disease (PAD) is a common factor in such blockages. If you notice that your toes appear to be bluish, it is suggested that you make an appointment with your podiatrist, who can offer a proper diagnosis and treatment options.
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 In Motion Foot and Ankle. 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.
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 our offices located in Cypress and Houston, TX . We offer the newest diagnostic and treatment technologies for all your foot and ankle needs.