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Diabetic Offloading Round table with Prof Chadwick

On Wednesday evening Orthotists from our clinical team were invited to participate in a round table on Offloading of the Diabetic Foot, which was chaired by Prof. Paul Chadwick and sponsored by OPED.

The event comprised of Podiatrists and Orthotists with specialities and experience in Diabetic MDTs from across the UK and covered:

  • The basics of offloading (suggested reading: Demystifying Offloading Document and IWGDF practical guidelines)
  • The barriers facing total contact use
  • SWOT analysis of diabetic foot services
  • A presentation on VACOcast, a cast-stable total contact offloading boot
  • A case study from South Tyneside Podiatry service and their successful implementation of VACOcast as their 1st line offloading device for plantar diabetic foot ulcers
  • A presentation on Health Economics of the Diabetic Foot

Our team picked their key learning points as

Key Learning Points

  • All members of the diabetic foot team need to understand offloading and have an appreciation of when to involve Orthotics
  • Lack of casting expertise and clinician time is a large hurdle in many services looking to provide gold standard offloading options
  • Concern over delay in intervention requires practical solutions for community podiatry to provide offloading directly
  • VACOcast Diabetic has become a useful and safe alternative to traditional total contact casting during the covid-19 pandemic when services and patient contact was reduced in many services across the UK
  • Diabetic foot issues cost NHS England £1 – 1.2 billion a year
  • Even a small improvement in healing rate of ulcers could have a large cost saving for the NHS