Health Care

Type 2 diabetes symptoms: Warning signs to look out for on your skin

Type 2 diabetes is a common condition in the UK and often develops when a person is overweight or obese.

It can lead to serious health complications, such as a heart attack, if left untreated, so it’s important to recognise symptoms as soon as possible.

Itching of the skin, particularly itchiness around the genitals, is a symptom commonly associated with the condition.

But this isn’t the only skin-related symptoms, according to American Academy of Dematology. Six to note are yellow, reddish or brown patches on the skin, hard thickening skin, blisters, skin infections, open sores and wounds, and skin tags.

Yellow, reddish or brown patches on the skin

The skin condition often begins as small raised solid bumps that look like pimples, says the organisation.

It adds: “As it progresses, these bumps turn into patches of swollen and hard skin.

“The patches can be yellow, reddish or brown. You may also notice the surrounding skin has a shiny porcelain-like appearance, you can see blood vessels, the skin is itchy and painful, and the skin disease does through cycles where it is active, inactive, and then active again.”

Hard, thickening skin

It says you may notice tight, waxy skin on the backs of your hands, and your fingers can become stuff and difficult to move.

“If diabetes has been poorly controlled for years, it can feel like you have pebbles in your fingertips,” it adds.


This is rare, but the organisation says people with diabetes can see blisters suddenly appear on their skin.

It adds: “You may see large blister, a group of blisters, or both. The blisters tend to form on the hands, feet, legs, or forearms and look like the blisters that appear after a serious burn.

“Unlike the blisters that develop after a burn, these blisters are not painful.”

Skin infections

People who have diabetes tend to get skin infections. It explains: “If you have a skin infection, you’ll notice one or more of the following – hot, swollen skin that is painful and an itchy rash and sometimes tiny blisters, dry scaly skin, or a white discharge that looks like cottage cheese.”

Open sores and wounds

Having high blood sugar for along time can lead to poor circulation and nerve damage. It says: “You may have developed these if you’ve had uncontrolled (or poorly controlled) diabetes for a long time.

“Poor circulation and nerve damage can make it hard for your body to heal wounds. This is especially true on the feet. These open wounds are called diabetic ulcers.”

Skin tags

Many people have skin tags, this is described as skin growths that hang from a stalk.

It advises: “While harmless, having numerous skin tags may be a sign that you have too much insulin in your blood or type 2 diabetes.”

There are three other unusual signs of type 2 diabetes you may not associate with the condition. 

Source : EXPRESS

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