Pat is supporting the Putting Feet First Campaign to make sure we can help prevent more amputations like the one she experienced.
The experience of having a toe removed was emotionally traumatic for me.
Pat, centre, with commmissioners from Southampton Clinical Commissioning Group
I found I had a tiny sore on my fourth toe on my right foot. I went to the community podiatry service as it was nearer to me than going to the hospital service.The sore soon turned into an ulcer and I was regularly attending every fortnightly or weekly depending on when appointments were available.
Every time I went I saw a different podiatrist who asked me if I thought it was better… seeing as it was covered between appointments and due to neuropathy in my feet, the only thing I could say was I hoped it was getting better, I could not answer them and in reality there was no consistency in care.
Eventually, the infection entered the bone and I had to have my toe removed, it was emotionally traumatic for me and whilst the wound healed this caused me anxiety and stress and required that I took time off work
I feel if I had had better care, not only would it have saved the NHS money and staff time, it would have saved my toe. This is why I feel it is so important to support thePutting Feet First campaign.
I’m glad we’ve managed to bring about improvements to foot care in my area.
I feel my amputation could have been avoided if I had received better medical care, and I have spoken with the local health bosses in Southampton about my experience, along with other people with diabetes and Diabetes UK.
The meeting about diabetes foot care in the area directly led to the local health bosses introducing a multi-disciplinary foot care team (that’s shown to prevent amputations) in 2016. After this event, I also provided a shoe for the AMP pop-up shoe shop in London to raise awareness of the importance of getting an annual foot check.
I am glad to that we’ve managed to bring about improvements to diabetes foot care in my area. Now we need to make sure these changes actually happen and more improvements happen elsewhere, and then my hope is fewer people will suffer amputations.
Find out how you can join the Putting Feet First Campaign like Pat and improve foot care in your area.