It wouldn't be hard to think that many Disney characters are in need of a podiatrist. Take a look at Goofy's big feet....you can't tell me that he doesn't have any foot problems with those! There is one Disney character that undoubtedly needs the input of a podiatrist. It's Coco...the first Disney character with diabetes. Coco is a monkey who has Type 1 Diabetes and is friends with Mickey, Minnie, Goofy, and the rest of the gang from Mickey Mouse Clubhouse. She wears a medical alert bracelet and carries supplies with her in a backpack to manage and treat her diabetes.
Coco is featured in the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse book Coco and Goofy's Goofy Day. In the book, Coco, Mickey and their friends go to Goofy's birthday party. At the party, she shows the others that she can partake in all of the party activities, despite her diabetes. Her friends, and the kids reading the story, learn that people with diabetes can be included in everything and any limitations do not define them as people. This is a winning message for children who may encounter classmates who have diabetes.
Why should Coco see a podiatrist? Diabetes can lead to issues such as peripheral neuropathy, a numbness in the feet. While we often discuss neuropathy in terms of Type 2 diabetes, those with Type 1 diabetes are also at risk. In my Houston podiatry practice, I have treated kids with Type 1 diabetes who have shown signs of diabetic peripheral neuropathy. While many kids with Type 1 diabetes are very well managed, often with insulin pumps, it is still important to form a relationship with a podiatrist to allow for easy access in case any problems do occur. For those who are well controlled and have few risk factors, an annual visit is sufficient.
If you or someone you love has been diagnosed with Type 1 or Type 2 diabetes, contact Tanglewood Foot Specialists. Dr. Andrew Schneider treats all foot complications caused by diabetes. Even so, prevention is always the best option!