An elderly man is now back on his feet within just months thanks to a specialist podiatry team.
Tom Hitchen, who is 84, was suffering pains in his foot. But is now fully mobile after being treated by staff at our Trust.
Tom was having pains from a serious ulcer on his right foot. Over time these worsened and he was referred to the Trust who recommended surgery after treatment to allow it to heal was only partly successful.
Bone was still exposed on Tom’s foot, so orthopaedic surgeon Paul Mackenney recommended amputating the small toe. The surgery was a success.
Since then, members of the highly specialist podiatry team have visited Tom in his home in Norton twice a week to dress the wound.
He has had regular visits to the University Hospital of North Tees to see Mr Mackenney. And has also visited specialists from the orthotics team who fitted him with orthopaedic shoes.
A fantastic recovery
Melanie Cooley is one of the Trust’s specialist podiatrists. She said: “Tom has made a fantastic recovery during what has been a challenging period during the pandemic when many patients were understandably nervous about coming in to hospital for treatment.
“He is an example of someone who has gone from diagnosis to full recovery and being fitted with footwear in just a matter of months.
“That’s thanks to his commitment to recovery and the help he’s had from a range of specialists at the Trust.
“We always advise people to check their feet regularly so that issues are raised before they worsen. But if people do get to that stage, our team is here to do all we can to ensure they are back on their feet as quickly as possible.”
The grandfather-of-one added: “I used to walk around in stockings and they started to make my foot itch. It started to worsen to the point where it was very painful.
“Once I got referred to the team, they put me on antibiotics and I did everything asked of me. The foot was improving but the bone was exposed and it was never going to fully heal without surgery.
“Thankfully, Mr Mackenney and the team did an extremely professional job treating the area. I am now at the point where I am back on my feet and able to do more, walking around and getting out into the garden.
“I am so grateful to all of the team for everything they have done.”