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Diabetes experts gather in S.A. to celebrate UTHSCSA's podiatry residency program's 30th anniversary, speak at annual Diabetic Foot Update

The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio's (UTHSCSA's) podiatry residency training program has reached a major milestone — 30 years as Texas' only residency/training program in podiatric medicine in an academic health center. The program has grown from a small, free clinic at the Robert B. Green Hospital with only one resident, to a program that trains 15 residents per year and is widely recognized as a global leader in diabetic foot education and podiatric medicine. Since its inception in 1954, more than 118 students have graduated from the program and now practice podiatric medicine at academic health centers and multi-specialty clinics around the world.

Faculty, staff, students and alumni will gather this month to celebrate the anniversary from 7 to 9 p.m. Saturday, Dec. 14, at the Texas Diabetes Institute (TDI), 701 S. Zarzamora St. Alumni from the classes of 1972 to 1976 will be honored and inducted into the UTHSCSA's podiatry residency program's honorary organization, The Foundation.

The anniversary coincides with the annual Diabetic Foot Update: A Multidisciplinary Approach, which will take place Dec. 12-15 at the Westin Riverwalk San Antonio Hotel, 420 West Market St. The event is in its 18th year and will feature more than 40 diabetes experts from across the world. Some of the topics to be discussed include "Nuclear Imaging in Peripheral Vascular Disease: MRA, AAPRO," "The Use of Stents in the Lower Extremities" and "Prevention of Ulceration: Do Shoes Work?"

"We are excited to celebrate the 30th anniversary of our podiatry residency program and are proud that many of the featured speakers at this year's Diabetic Foot Update are our own alumni," said Lawrence Harkless, DPM., professor in the department of orthopaedics, director of the podiatry residency training program and the Louis T. Bogy Professor of Podiatric Medicine. "They are speaking right alongside world-renowned experts such as Dr. Paul Brand, a hand and foot surgeon who spent 20 years in India as a missionary, treating patients with leprosy." Dr. Brand founded the Hansen's Disease Center and the Insensitive Foot Center in Carville, La. He will discuss the "History of the Diabetic Foot" and the role of insensitivity in ulcer development at 4:45 p.m. Thursday, Dec. 12.

The registration fee for The Diabetic Foot Update 2002: A Multidisciplinary Approach is $550 for doctors of podiatric medicine, doctors of medicine and doctors of osteopathic medicine. The fee for military physicians, physical therapists and international guests is $400. Cost for nurses, pedorthists and other health professionals is $375. Residents and students, with a letter of verification from their training directors, will be admitted for $35.

Drs. Harkless, Richard C. Adam, DPM, clinical professor of orthopaedics, and John Steinberg, DPM, assistant professor of orthopaedics, all of the UTHSCSA, are the symposium directors.

The department of orthopaedics podiatry division; the American Diabetes Association, South Central Region; the Texas Diabetes Institute; and the Texas Diabetes Council of the Texas Department of Health are sponsors of the event. Dr. Harkless heads the Diabetes Council.

For more information or to register for The Diabetic Foot Update 2002, call the UTHSCSA's office of continuing medical education at (210) 567-4446. For more information about the 30th anniversary celebration of the podiatry residency program on Dec. 14, call Margie Gatica at (210) 567-6503.

Contact: Natalie Gutierrez or Aileen Salinas