Diabetes on the rise in East Lancashire

BETTER CHOICES Retired policeman Adrian Myhill must wear leg casts

BETTER CHOICES Retired policeman Adrian Myhill must wear leg casts

First published in News Lancashire Telegraph: Photograph of the Author by , Health reporter

THERE will be a 15per cent rise in the number of people living with diabetes in East Lancashire by 2020, according to experts.

Diabetes UK said those with the Type 2 condition will jump from 35,200 to 41,500 in less than eight years, because of the area’s high levels of obesity, and more susceptible south east Asian population.

One sufferer, who has spent two out of the last five years with his legs in a cast because of a diabetes-related condition, has urged people to go to their doctors “at the first suspicion”.

Adrian Myhill, 57, a retired policeman from Feniscowles, Blackburn, was diagnosed in November 1997, but had already had the condition for some time.

The father-of-four said: “I was working horrible hours and long shifts, and eating at all times of the day and night, but I never really thought much of it.

“At the time, my wife Jayne was training to become a nurse. She noticed I had the classic signs of diabetes – an unquenchable thirst, extreme tiredness, and was irritable.

“When I first got the test results back, I went into denial. Coming to terms with having the condition was the hardest part.

“Then I started to develop problems in both feet and had to deal with it, and take ownership.

“I’m not going to blame working for the police for my illness. I could have been better informed, and I could have made better choices.

“I’ve contributed to ending up like this, so I’m responsible for what happens in the future.”

Despite insulin treatment, Adrian’s feet got worse and he was diagnosed as having severe diabetic neuropathy, which means he has a complete loss of sensation up to his mid-shins.

He is unaware of minor cuts and sores which can develop into infected ulcers, and have led to the development of Charcot Foot – a condition causing weakening of the bones that causes joints to collapse.

He said: “Having no feeling means that I lose spacial awareness of where my feet are pointing, and at what angle. I now walk very slowly, and have to look ahead at all times.

“It is frustrating to a degree, but I know that if I don’t behave myself, I could end up losing limbs.”

He added: “My message to other people is to be more prepared, and take responsibility.

“There’s no excuse for eating bad food if you’re working shifts. Think about getting a healthier packed lunch prepared.

“Most of all, go to the doctor if you’re at all worried. The tests are non-invasive and early diagnosis is going to help your quality of life.”

Blackburn with Darwen has been ranked as 18th worst for diabetes levels out of 151 PCT areas in England, and the rest of East Lancashire is 53rd.

Comments (6)

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12:35pm Fri 12 Oct 12

mavrick says...

Too many people do not take this condition seriously enough. It is life threatening if left untreated.
Too many people do not take this condition seriously enough. It is life threatening if left untreated. mavrick
  • Score: 0

2:19pm Fri 12 Oct 12

Major Tom says...

And too many expect the state to pay for their lifestyle choices.
And too many expect the state to pay for their lifestyle choices. Major Tom
  • Score: -1

3:29pm Fri 12 Oct 12

Ian the Beancounter says...

Major Tom wrote:
And too many expect the state to pay for their lifestyle choices.
It's not always a lifestyle choice - it can be hereditary. I was diagnosed as having type 2 in 2000 after an active sporting life up to around 1990. I was slightly heavy, I suppose (6 ft tall and 15 stone) but ate a good diet and kept relatively fit. However, there was a history of diabetes on my mother's side of the family which increased the risk of me getting it.

I also suffer with diabetic neuropathy in my feet and lower legs, and it's starting to affect my fingers. I also have glaucoma (another side effect of diabetes).

I would certainly urge anyone who has any concerns to see their GP as it can be well controlled if caught early enough.
[quote][p][bold]Major Tom[/bold] wrote: And too many expect the state to pay for their lifestyle choices.[/p][/quote]It's not always a lifestyle choice - it can be hereditary. I was diagnosed as having type 2 in 2000 after an active sporting life up to around 1990. I was slightly heavy, I suppose (6 ft tall and 15 stone) but ate a good diet and kept relatively fit. However, there was a history of diabetes on my mother's side of the family which increased the risk of me getting it. I also suffer with diabetic neuropathy in my feet and lower legs, and it's starting to affect my fingers. I also have glaucoma (another side effect of diabetes). I would certainly urge anyone who has any concerns to see their GP as it can be well controlled if caught early enough. Ian the Beancounter
  • Score: 1

6:56pm Fri 12 Oct 12

real betis hotpot says...

"because of the area’s high levels of obesity, and more susceptible south east Asian population"

There is actually quite a large south east Asian population in East Lancashire. I'm always bumping into people from Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam, Laos, Burma, Cambodia, the Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan and Papua New Guinea.
"because of the area’s high levels of obesity, and more susceptible south east Asian population" There is actually quite a large south east Asian population in East Lancashire. I'm always bumping into people from Thailand, Malaysia, Indonesia, Vietnam, Laos, Burma, Cambodia, the Philippines, Singapore, Taiwan and Papua New Guinea. real betis hotpot
  • Score: 0

8:20pm Fri 12 Oct 12

mavrick says...

Major Tom wrote:
And too many expect the state to pay for their lifestyle choices.
You really are a sad case.Typically selfish and me first, I hope if you become ill you don't expect the state to help out.
[quote][p][bold]Major Tom[/bold] wrote: And too many expect the state to pay for their lifestyle choices.[/p][/quote]You really are a sad case.Typically selfish and me first, I hope if you become ill you don't expect the state to help out. mavrick
  • Score: 0

9:57pm Fri 12 Oct 12

Noiticer says...

This news is not unexpected. Leaving aside hereditary traits, the fact that so many people are grossly overweight, eat and drink to excess and take little or no exercise can but lead to an increase in diabetes, heart disease and numerous cancers. Yes, the individuals are culpable in their own ill health but so are supermarkets that continue to offer reduced ' bargain' prices on high sugar and high fat foods rather than the healthier items and so are food manufacturers who produce extra large bars of chocolate etc. And the Government leaves it to the food industry to self regulate and we know what that means! Government needs to be more proactive and the general population needs to get a grip on its lifestyle choices and if NHS treatment is to be rationed put the overweight 'blobs' at the bottom of the queue!
This news is not unexpected. Leaving aside hereditary traits, the fact that so many people are grossly overweight, eat and drink to excess and take little or no exercise can but lead to an increase in diabetes, heart disease and numerous cancers. Yes, the individuals are culpable in their own ill health but so are supermarkets that continue to offer reduced ' bargain' prices on high sugar and high fat foods rather than the healthier items and so are food manufacturers who produce extra large bars of chocolate etc. And the Government leaves it to the food industry to self regulate and we know what that means! Government needs to be more proactive and the general population needs to get a grip on its lifestyle choices and if NHS treatment is to be rationed put the overweight 'blobs' at the bottom of the queue! Noiticer
  • Score: 0

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