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Roy Johnson's story

Roy has used his experience to campaign for better foot care to make sure we can help prevent more amputations.

I have five toes missing now, and my balance is compromised.

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My first amputations came about because I was working in Angola in 2002 and the water used for showering should have been supplied from a sanitised plant.

 

The drivers were filling their vehicles from the local river. One day I cut my toenails too short and nicked the skin. This allowed whatever bugs were in the water into my system.

 

Within 48 hours two toes started to turn black. I was flown home to UK. My first two toes were removed under general anesthesia in 2003, it was frightening thinking how my life would change.

 

The next amputation after many treatments and antibiotics was with a local anaesthetic. I was aware of the procedure, but it was behind a curtain so I could not see. 

My final amputations in 2010 was again via local injection. I have five toes missing now, and my balance is compromised. I feel fortunate they my care was good, as at one point it was a foot earmarked to be removed.

Campaigning has given me the opportunity to speak on behalf of all the people I have met in podiatry clinics.

My son was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes at age 13.  Although I had been Type 1 for 51 years myself, I was never active in campaigning.  I recognized NHS had been caring for me for many years and will do the same for my son.  I felt I should try in some small way to repay debt owed, so I began to campaign.

Being a Diabetes Voice has given me the opportunity to speak on behalf of all of the people with diabetes I have met in podiatry clinics over the past 13 years.  I have been receiving wonderful care in my particular case. Some of the people I have spoken to have not been as fortunate as myself.  It is important to strive to get all clinics to same high level of care no matter what part of the country you are located.

I am passionate about promoting early intervention to reduce amputation rates.

 

 

I’ve supported the Putting Feet First campaign to reduce amputation rates.  I am passionate about promoting early intervention to reduce amputation rates and patchy coverage of services across the UK.

 In February 2012, I spoke to MPs in Parliament, sharing share my experience of having an amputation. I have also spoken to my local MP Jonathan Lord many times about improving foot care.

Recently I was part of the AMP pop-up shoe shop  that highlighted the 135 amputations people with diabetes have each week. I’ve even spoken live on BBC Radio Surrey about the importance of good foot care to prevent amputations.

Find out how you can join the Putting Feet First campaign like Roy.

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