Diabetes and Musculoskeletal Conditions

Dr. Kam Shojania, MD FRCPC, Rheumatologist, discusses diabetes and musculoskeletal conditions.

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Dr. Kam Shojania, MD FRCPC, Rheumatologist, discusses diabetes and musculoskeletal conditions.
Video transcript

Featuring Dr. Kam Shojania, MD, FRCPC

Duration: 2 minutes, 4 seconds

Diabetes is a very common condition. Musculoskeletal conditions of diabetes are also common but are often misdiagnosed.

For example, people with diabetes have high sugars, these high sugars can deposit along tendons and cause the tendons to become thickened. So that causes things like trigger finger, where the finger could be stuck in flexion, having difficulty opening it, it can be stuck.

This sort of condition, the musculoskeletal conditions of diabetes also include carpal tunnel syndrome where the tendons are thick in the wrist, and pinch the nerve that goes down to the fingers. Again, thickened tendons around the shoulder capsule will make people with diabetes develop shoulder tendonitis.

People with diabetes may have something called limited joint mobility syndrome, where their tendons don't stretch enough. And they might have something called a prayer sign, where their fingers do not flatten when they put their hands together.

So people with diabetes frequently may have musculoskeletal conditions that go unnoticed until it's late, and they have pain and loss of function. It's important to help prevent the musculoskeletal conditions of diabetes.

One of the best ways is to have the diabetes well controlled, the blood sugars don't have a chance to go very high and deposit on the tendons. Another way to manage these complications is to keep fit, keep the range of movement for the joints as full as possible, keep strong, and keep very active.

That way it's good for the diabetes and also good for the joints and tendons. If you have diabetes and wonder if you wonder if you have the musculoskeletal condition complications, please contact your healthcare provider.

Presenter: Dr. Kam Shojania, Rheumatologist, Vancouver, BC

Local Practitioners: Rheumatologist

This content is for informational purposes only, and is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified healthcare professional with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition.

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