Our specialists includes endocrinologists, surgeons, dietitians, exercise therapists and specialist nurses including a dedicated diabetes cardiovascular nurse specialist and an endocrine nurse specialist.
The department is based at the Cornwall Diabetes Education Centre (CDEC), which is located next to the helipad, behind the Royal Cornwall Hospital Site in Truro.
As part of providing the best possible care for our patients, our Diabetes Research Team gives patients the opportunity to experience new therapies as part of national and international research programmes. You can find out more about taking part in research here.
You can be referred for an outpatient appointment by your GP or your practice nurse.
If you need to stay in hospital because of your diabetes or endocrine issue, you will most likely stay on Grenville Ward, our specialist renal and endocrine ward.
First of all we’ll give you a simple sight test and then we’ll give you some drops to dilate your pupils. We then photograph the back of your eyes but the camera does not come into contact with your eyes. The photographs are then reviewed by experts and we send a letter to you and your GP within 6 weeks letting you know the screening results.
The appointment will last approximately 30 minutes. Eye drops may affect your vision for a few hours, so you should not drive after your appointment.
As a patient with diabetes, you are at risk of developing permanent damage to your eyes, which can cause loss of vision or even blindness. You need a thorough check once a year to detect any early signs of eye disease, so that you can receive appropriate treatment and prevent further damage. However, these changes take several years to develop. If disease is detected early enough, laser treatment is very effective in preventing loss of vision.
The screening is non-invasive and very safe. However on rare occasions, you may experience some discomfort in your eyes after having the eye drops. If after six hours you are still experiencing pain or discomfort, you should contact your GP (or at evenings or weekends, contact your local Accident and Emergency department).
Your GP will refer you to the diabetic retinal screening service and we will send you an appointment. To change your appointment, please contact the diabetic retinal screening office, whose details will be on your appointment letter.
If you wear glasses, please bring them with you. Dilating the pupils lets in more light to the eye, so you may also like to bring a pair of sunglasses to wear for comfort in bright light.
If your results are normal, the DRS office will recall you for your annual check up in 12 months’ time. However, in certain circumstances such as pregnancy, you may be recalled sooner.
After the screening, we’ll check your images and send your results to you and your GP. If necessary, we will arrange for you to attend a hospital eye clinic for further examination, and possible treatment.
Yes, you’ll still need to see your optician for your usual sight test and glaucoma check.
We help our patients achieve optimal diabetes control and optimal physical, psychological, intellectual, educational and social development. We take a child, and family, centred approach, and services are tailored to fit to each individual child and family’s needs.
We have a structured education programme to empower our children and young people to self-manage their diabetes with the support of their families and others involved in their day-to-day care. We also provide Insulin Pump Therapy for those who meet the self-management and NICE guidelines criteria.
Our service meets the Paediatric Diabetes National Tariff criteria and we follow national and international guidance on diabetes care. We also attend the meetings of the South West Paediatric Diabetes Network.
The quality of our service is monitored by annual submission of data to the National Paediatric Diabetes Audit (NPDA), by performing local audits, and by taking part in the National Paediatric Diabetes Peer Review.
Feedback from our children and young people, and their families, is achieved by taking part in the Patient Reported Experience Measure, which is conducted annually as part of the NPDA. We also work closely with our local parents’ support group, Supporting Kernow’s Young Diabetics (SKYD).
Please call the Royal Cornwall Hospital Switchboard on 01872 250000. If is between 8am and 8pm, ask to page the Paediatric Diabetes Nurse on call. If it is between 8pm and 8am, ask them to page the Paediatric Registrar on call.
Dr Katie Mallam (Lead)
Dr Simon Robertson
Anita England (Lead Nurse, Paediatric Diabetes Clinical Nurse Specialist and Transition Nurse)
Please click here to view our guidelines
You can also find out more about how we care for children with long term conditions, such as diabetes, on our child health pages.