Keeping your feet: Helping those with diabetes prevent amputations

Jul. 10, 2012

Take care of your feet and avoid having a lower limb amputated. It is this simple, life-saving message that the Canadian Association of Wound Care in partnership with the Public Health Agency of Canada is desperate to get through to Canadians living with diabetes.

To do so, they are spearheading a series of foot care workshops with London being one of only 10 locations in Canada selected to host these peer-led educational sessions for people living with diabetes.

Diabetes negatively affects sensation and healing ability, so those with diabetes often don’t know there’s anything wrong with their feet. That’s why constant attention to foot care is vital. 85 per cent of lower limb amputations are preceded by foot wounds, and an estimated 50 per cent of amputations could be prevented if good foot care practices were routine.

Kyle Goettl, a member of the expert advisory group and a nurse clinician in amputee rehabilitation at St. Joseph’s Parkwood Hospital, says, “Nothing would make us happier than to see our amputation business drop as a result of those with diabetes paying attention to their feet.”

The workshops, called PEP (Peer Education Program) Talk are open to anyone living with diabetes. They are led by a person with diabetes who has extensive training in foot care principles and prevention of foot wounds related to diabetes. Two nurses will also be offering their assistance and expertise.

The PEP Talk program was designed with input from people living with diabetes across the country as well as a national expert advisory group of health care professionals within the Canadian Association of Wound Care (CAWC).

These workshops are presented by the CAWC, with additional funding from the Public Health Agency of Canada.

Dates and times: 5:30 to 8:00 pm on July 17, Aug. 22, Sept. 11 (more dates will be listed on the website as they are confirmed).

Location: BioPed store - 125 Clarke Road, London (get directions)

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For more information contact:
Kyle Goettl
519 685-4292 ext. 42542

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