ECU medical students help locals with diabetes healthy habits


GREENVILLE, Pitt County - Diabetes is a big problem in Eastern North Carolina. On Wednesday, some medical students from East Carolina University jumped in to help in the battle.

ECU medical students joined forces with local podiatrists and Vidant Medical Center in Greenville for the "In Your Shoes" clinic. Patients who attended lined up to have their feet washed and checked for any open wounds while also getting educational information about diabetes, foot care and other steps to fight the disease.

The clinic was held in conjunction with Vidant's "Winning with Diabetes" Conference, designed to teach people how to best manage their diabetes.

"I have the diabetic nerve pain," said Linda Everett. "My feet are burning and hurting at the bottom. Sometimes it feels like I'm walking on coal."

Everett came to the clinic to learn more about managing her diabetes, which she's dealt with for three years. Part of the problem with diabetes is it can slow down the body's ability to heal wounds.

"Some folks can bear pain," Everett said. "But with me, I can't stand pain. I think I would just lay in the bed and just feel like a depression."

"Something as simple as a cut that we would heal naturally from, somebody with chronic diabetes, a small cut can turn into a large ulcer which can turn into possibly an amputation down the line," said John Hurley, an ECU medical student.

Everett said the care she received was beneficial and the information useful.

"I"m gonna exercise, I'm gonna check my feet more and I'm gonna stop walking barefoot," Everett said.

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