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Thyroid UK
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Peripheral Artery Disease?

Hi I have been having some problems with my feet/toes/legs which started about 9 years ago, in 2008 and I am wondering if it could be Peripheral Artery Disease (PAD). In 2008 I experienced severe cold exposure which turned my toes blue. I also cannot feel anything in my toes, a GP stuck a pin in my toes and I did not feel a thing so I am guessing the nerves in my toes are damaged. I had a few occasions where my legs went "fuzzy" but GP insisted my blood test results were normal at the time.

Since 2015 my toenails have become more discoloured underneath. At first they turned brown but now they look as though they have been bleeding. GP sent my toenail clippings off to rule out fungal infection and I didn't hear anything back.

I went to an urgent care centre in November 2016 and I had a nurse and a doctor examine my toenails. They both advised me to go back to my GP. The GP I saw the same day said the discolouration will grow out if I kept my toenails short but since then the following problems have happened:

- I have developed ulcers and dark red spots on my feet and toes

- Some of my smaller toes look squashed at the ends

- The skin colour under my toes is dark red/purple

- I have developed white flaky skin over my toenail cuticles

- My legs have become more shiny

- I have increased paleness, numbness and tingling in my feet when they are elevated but the paleness, numbness and tingling go away when sitting up or standing

- I have what looks like "undernail bleeding" as if my toenails have been hit with a hammer/mallet or trapped in a door. I have not injured my feet/toes, have had diabetes ruled out with a HbA1c test, I am generally active, I have had fungal nail infections ruled out and I don't wear shoes that squash my toes.

Could anyone please advise? I speak to a different GP about this on Friday because the numbness and tingling when my feet are elevated has only just been happening as of now but with all the other problems in my feet and legs...it just makes me wonder if I am going nuts or if there is a serious problem. There are cardiovascular problems in the family history including high cholesterol, stroke and heart disease. I have Hashimotos and I am slightly undermedicated in terms of thyroid meds with everything in range but still symptomatic but I am not sure if these problems are thyroid related or not.

Any input would be welcome.

Thank you

12 Replies

Have you been checked for diabetes and/or a B12 deficiency. both can cause problems with feet/nerves. I think it is disgraceful that your GP didn't refer you to a hospital. The fact that you have to guess what's going on when you have some horrible symptoms is disgraceful. Ask to be referred to a dermalogist.


Yes, i was also just about to ask whether diabeties had been looked at. I also really think you need a referral to get to the bottom of it and don't put up with it. I would change GPs until you find one that will help!


Apologies, just realised you mentioned diabeties is ruled out.


Dermatologists can be an excellent resource.


The only other thing I know of that can cause similar issues is raynaulds which is also autoimmune - my friend has it in her hand but her nan got it bad in her legs. I really think you need to get a real diagnosis from a pro on this one regardless even if it is this as could be primary/secondary etc. Anti inflammatory diet may help in the meantime IF if it this and if you are showing any signs of inflammation in your blood tests




I see your B12 and ferritin levels are very low.


B12 deficiency can cause peripheral neuropathy. Ask your doctor to test for pernicious anaemia. Plus - if you aren't on iron tablets you probably should be.

Plus have a read of this: podiatrytoday.com/when-vita...


I have just read your link and it should be posted more often as it has great reference as to why we may develop other signs/symptoms and how to help improve conditions.


It was a lucky find, shaws - I Googled for piccies of "B12 deficient feet" and that's what popped up!


GP sounds very negligent. Take someone with you if you can and insist you are referred.

1 like

Your treatment sounds absolutely shocking. What about a referral to a good state registered chiropodist?

Surely they ought to be more knowledgeable about foot and nail conditions and able to refer you for the further treatment that I'm sure you will need.


Have these doctors taken any exams at all?


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