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Campaign launched to help diabetic feet problems

Following the news that there have been major increases in diabetes-related foot amputation rates across England, the national charity Diabetes UK has launched a campaign to raise awareness of the problems faced by patients with the condition.
With the worrying variations in such amputations being explained by a lack of proper healthcare, the chief executive of Diabetes UK, Barbara Young, has called for more action, especially as an amputation can significantly lower the quality of life and increase the risk of dying within the next few years.
There are around 5,000 diabetes-related amputations carried out each year, and it is argued that four fifths of these are avoidable through improved healthcare provision and management of the condition. To help achieve this, the charity has launched an initiative called ‘Putting Feet First’, which aims to reduce the amount of amputations carried out on diabetics by a half over the next five years, and also to raise awareness of the issue.
It recommends that all diabetes patients should manage their levels of blood sugar, cholesterol and blood pressure properly, and to check their feet on a regular basis, as well as be aware of the level of healthcare they should expect.
As Baroness Young pointed out, annual foot checks “are important for identifying problems at an early stage, but many thousands of people are not getting them. And when they are being done, they are sometimes insufficiently thorough.”

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