Bullosis Diabeticorum

Is There a Correlation Between Hyperglycemia and This Symptomatology?

Thomas C. Wilson, BHS; Robert J. Snyder, DPM, MSc; Charles C. Southerland, DPM


Wounds. 2012;24(12) 

In This Article


Bullosis diabeticorum (bullous disease of diabetes or diabetic bullae) is a noninflammatory, blistering disease occurring spontaneously in diabetic patients.The bullae are usually located on acral skin surfaces, particularly the feet. While this disease is unique to patients with diabetes, it may mimic other blistering disorders. This article reviews a case of a 75-year-old Hispanic male with type II diabetes mellitus who suffered from chronic diabetic bullae during an 11-year span. Researchers recorded the patient's blood glucose level on 50 occasions of bullae occurrence and 50 occasions when bullae were not present. It was discovered that the patient was more likely to experience bullae formation when his blood glucose level was elevated (t test analysis, P < 0.007). The etiology of bullosis diabeticorum may be multifactorial, but this study suggests poor regulation of blood glucose levels, particularly hyperglycemia, may have a significant impact on the manifestation of this dermopathy.