Diabetic Dermopathy

As those with diabetes know, the disease, especially when poorly treated or monitored, may lead to other complications like infections, wounds, and other health complications. Diabetic dermopathy is one of these many health risks for those with diabetes, and may effect patients of all genders, ages, and races if diabetes is not well monitored and cared for.

What is it?

Diabetic dermopathy is a skin disease that may appear as circular or ovulate raised or indented scaly patches on the skin. Such patches range in color from pink to red or from tan shades to dark brown. These are most often visible on the legs, including the areas of the shin, lower leg, thighs, sides of feet, or forearm. Most often, these are found on the shins. Though the direct cause is not known, it is thought to occur because of changes in little blood vessels, and from minor leakage of the blood from these blood vessels into the skin itself.

Who is at Risk?

Most often, this condition will only occur in those with diabetes. Up to 50% of those suffering from diabetes may experience diabetic dermopathy, though those who have had diabetes for a long time and/or have not done a good job in caring for or monitoring their condition are at a higher risk. Those without diabetes may also, rarely, experience this skin issue, though it is normally after some sort of injury that this occurs. If you are unsure if the scaly patch on your leg is from diabetes or an injury, you will want to consult your doctor or medical professional.


Look for scaly, round or oval patches on any of the areas listed above. You will most likely have more than 4 of such patches on any of these areas if the skin condition has been caused by diabetes. Such patches do not hurt or burn, itch, sting, or seem at all bothersome. They are simply an eyesore. You may be able to try out different self-care methods to get rid of or lessen the symptoms of diabetic dermopathy.


At this time, there is no real medical treatment for diabetic dermopathy. No real treatment is actually needed, either. However, if you want to reduce the appearance of such spots, or perhaps keep them from appearing in the first place if you have recently been diagnosed with diabetes, there are certain steps you can take in self-care on a daily basis that may help to do just that. Normally, time is the best treatment for these spots, along with avoiding any type of injury to the areas listed above, especially the legs. Be sure to keep your legs, thighs, and other areas well-moisturized on a daily basis the help prevent such scaly patches from developing. Also, caring for your diabetes properly will go a long way in preventing these lesions from appearing. Be sure to control your blood glucose levels, take your prescribed medications on a proper schedule, and manage your diet.


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