Patients at the Interprofessional Diabetes Clinic (IDC) see healthcare providers in several different areas to help develop a comprehensive plan for managing diabetes.
Eye & Vision Care
Optometrists and students in the Pacific University College of Optometry provide eye exams, evaluating patients for external eye conditions that often accompany diabetes, such as dry eyes and ocular infections. Patients' pupils are dilated to check for signs of diabetic retinal disease. Advanced technologies, including photography, optic nervefiber analysis, visual fields and ophthalmic ultrasound also are used to evaluate other conditions that may occur with diabetes and threaten vision. These may include glaucoma, macular degeneration and cataracts. If necessary, a prescription for eyeglasses will be provided.
Diabetes complications may include oral health problems such as periodontal, or gum, disease, dry mouth and a higher risk for cavities. There is a relationship between uncontrolled gum disease and n inability to control blood glucose. Dental hygiene services are provided by students in the Pacific University dental hygiene program, supervised by faculty. Services include dental screening, radiographs, oral health education, periodontal assessments, and dental cleaning. Patients may be referred to their dentist of choice or the Pacific University Dental Hygiene Clinic for additional services.
Medical & Pharmacy
Providers in the School of Physician Assistant Studies and School of Pharmacy collaborate to provide medical evaluations and medication management for patients. Physician assistant services include comprehensive medical evaluations, disease management and counseling. Pharmacy services include a review of medical history, laboratory values and medications, and adherence assessments. Physician assistants and pharmacists collaborate to initiate or adjust drug therapy and to provide individualized education on diabetes self-management regarding blood glucose testing, medications, nutrition and physical activity.
Mental Health Care
Mental health services include the latest and most effective interventions for a wide range of concerns that impact patients with diabetes, including anxiety and worry, depression, anger, trauma, loss and grief, relationship difficulties, self-esteem problems and parent-child issues. Individual, couple, family and group services are available.
Occupational therapy services help patients maintain independence and cope with the tasks of daily living that may present a challenge. Occupational therapists provide education, alternative techniques and adaptive equipment to help compensate for changes in vision, strength and coordination of the hands, or diminished sensation that may accompany diabetes, as well as strategies to maintain a healthy lifestyle to prevent further complications and promote health.
Physical therapy services help improve or restore mobility, decrease the risk of complications, and improve the quality of life for people living with diabetes. The physical therapist will assess the sensation in both feet and teach patients how to perform basic diabetic foot care. In addition, the physical therapist will examine how a patient walks and will prescribe an appropriate walking program to help improve the regulation of blood glucose levels.