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Shrewsbury practitioner cycles 176 miles to highlight diabetes-related foot amputations

By Lisa O'Brien | Shrewsbury | Health | Published:

A clinician at Royal Shrewsbury Hospital has cycled 176 miles to raise awareness of diabetes-related foot amputations.

Rob Clarke

Along with a team of seven other concerned clinicians and industry representatives, Rob Clarke, an advanced clinical practitioner (ACP) in acute medicine at RSH, cycled one mile for every toe, foot and leg amputation each week caused by diabetes in England, which recent figures put at an average of 176.

Rob said: “We hit on the idea of cycling the same number of miles as there are amputations each week as a result of diabetes-related injury and trauma.

"Sadly, in the space of just five years, this means the distance we cycle has increased from 130 to 176 miles, an increase of over 2,000 amputations.

“This year’s ride took place on the south coast, with day one covering a 100 mile tour of the New Forest up to an elevation of 3,000ft, before circling the Isle of Wight on day two to an elevation of 4,500ft.

"We’ve reached our total of 176 miles so we’re all feeling very tired but proud.

“I’m an ACP in acute medicine and we see a lot of patients with diabetes every day, some of them destined for amputations.

"Experts suggest that through improved awareness and support for patients, around 80 per cent of diabetes-related amputations could be avoided.

“We all need to keep shouting about the importance of early recognition and treatment as we really don’t want these amputations to keep going up, particularly when four out of five start as diabetic foot ulcers, which if reported and assessed early can be reversed and are entirely treatable.”

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One of the problems caused by diabetes is reduced feeling or sensation in a patient’s feet and lower limbs.

This can make it impossible to feel pain or discomfort to the feet and affects the ability to heal from any trauma.

Lisa O'Brien

By Lisa O'Brien
Senior Reporter - @lisaobrien_Star

Senior reporter based at Shropshire Star's head office in Ketley. Covering the Telford area.

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