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DVIDS – News – Walter Reed diabetes nurse educators recognized for their actions

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Written by James A. Black – WRMMC Command and Communications Office

Nursing: Answering the Call to Service

Tracy M. Carter, a pediatric diabetes nurse educator at Walter Reed National Medical Center and Alexander T. ) received the “Values ​​and Action Award.'' Melissa Austin. Austin posited that Carter's professionalism and teamwork have earned him the trust and respect of patients and colleagues, and that he embodies the very spirit of the hospital's values ​​and mission to provide patient-centered excellence.

“I was called into nursing early on, and I had no doubts,” said Carter, a native of Clarion County, Pennsylvania. “My environment and education shaped me by emphasizing the need for a career that allows me to thrive anywhere, anytime.”

Carter earned a bachelor's degree in nursing from Thiel College and later earned a master's degree in liberal arts from the University of Mary Washington.

As a 21-year-old college senior, Carter met a recruiter who encouraged her to apply for a medical/surgical nurse internship at Wright-Patterson Air Force Regional Medical Center in Fairborn, Ohio. It was a life-changing opportunity that sparked her interest in military medicine.

During her internship, Carter became interested in the role diabetes education plays in preventing long-term complications such as vision loss, heart disease, and potentially life-threatening tissue damage.

Diabetes: A disease that often has no symptoms and is life-threatening

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), diabetes is a chronic (long-term) health condition that affects how the body converts food into energy.

Carter explained that our bodies break down most of the food we eat into sugar (glucose) and release it into the bloodstream. When a person's blood sugar levels rise, a signal is sent to the pancreas to release insulin. Insulin is the key to getting blood sugar into the body's cells for use as energy, Carter noted.

When diabetes occurs, a patient's body either does not produce enough insulin or is unable to make full use of it. Without enough insulin, a patient's cells become unresponsive to it, and too much blood sugar can linger in a patient's bloodstream, Carter said. Over time, it can cause serious health problems such as heart disease, vision loss, and kidney disease.

According to the CDC, there are three types of diabetes, and Carter customizes instruction to prevent or delay the onset of diabetes. Specifically, she meets with patients and coaches them to develop healthy coping strategies and create healthy nutritional plans.

Types of diabetes

There are three main types of diabetes: type 1, type 2, and gestational diabetes (diabetes during pregnancy).

type 1 diabetes

Type 1 diabetes is thought to be caused by an autoimmune response (where the body mistakenly attacks itself). This reaction causes the body to stop producing insulin. Approximately 5-10% of diabetics have type 1 diabetes. Type 1 diabetes can be diagnosed at any age, and symptoms often develop quickly. Type 1 diabetes requires daily doses of insulin to survive.

type 2 diabetes

In type 2 diabetes, the body does not use insulin well to keep blood sugar levels at normal levels. Approximately 90-95% of diabetics have type 2 diabetes. Diabetes develops over many years and is usually diagnosed in adults (though it is increasingly affecting children, teens, and young adults). Symptoms may go unnoticed, so it's important to get your blood sugar tested if you're at risk. Type 2 diabetes can be prevented or delayed by making healthy lifestyle changes, such as:

• Lose weight.
• Eat healthy food.
• Be active.

gestational diabetes

Gestational diabetes occurs in pregnant women who have never had diabetes. If you have gestational diabetes, your baby may be at higher risk of developing health problems. Gestational diabetes usually goes away after the baby is born. However, it increases her risk of type 2 diabetes later in life. Your baby is more likely to become obese as a child or teenager and develop her type 2 diabetes later in life.

Promoters of diabetes awareness and prevention

Carter's passion for diabetes prevention is only surpassed by her empathy for improving the lives of people living with this potentially life-threatening disease.

During his career, Carter has received numerous awards and published white papers at the annual meeting of the Association of Diabetes Care Educators, one of the leading professional organizations focused on improving the care of people with diabetes. I have made an announcement.

Carter said he always strives to make his leaders proud. “One of my first nurse managers was impressed by her professionalism and [her ability in] Always make people feel heard. ” This spirit instilled in Carter a desire to become an engaged and empathetic professional who connects with patients and teammates by building trust and transparency.

To learn more about Walter Reed's diabetes services, please visit the following links:


Obtained data: April 30, 2024
Post date: April 30, 2024 11:37
Story ID: 469874
position: Bethesda, Maryland, USA

Web view: 73
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