Leslie Scott, PhD, APRN – UK HealthCare

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[MUSIC PLAYING] My name is Leslie Scott. I am a pediatric nurse in pediatric endocrinology here at the University of Kentucky. And my practice is in pediatric endocrinology, so I see children with endocrine problems, short stature, hypothyroidism.

Probably most of the children I see have type 1 or type 2 diabetes. I see some children with pre-diabetes. So we have a team of educators and providers, both nurses, dieticians, doctors, who work together to help the family to better understand diabetes and how to help their children. The difference between adults and children is that we have to consider normal growth and development and make sure that the child learns how to have fun as a child and how, again, to work on their diabetes to be a child and do it safely.

I think it is important that when they are in the community, people do not think that diabetes is different or that the child is different. I do not want that they can not participate in class activities because they have diabetes. I want them to participate in sports and the academic team and in extracurricular activities like everyone else. I want to make sure that they strive to be better children and teenagers. And I hope I can do that.

I had a young woman who is now a nurse and I was her diabetes educator when she was diagnosed for the first time at age 10, so I can not even believe she is old enough to have been her educator for many years. But she told me … it's like, today I'm a nurse thanks to you. And then I think that is probably the greatest gift or compliment that they have given me.

My mother was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes when I was 10 years old. She spent all her life growing up with type 1 diabetes. And I remember, as a child, she told me things she could not do as a child due to her type 1 diabetes. She was not able to participate in many school activities or school parties. In fact, he was told he could not have children because of his diabetes.

And so I learned in nursing school that a lot of that was due to the lack of education at that time. And then I decided that I did not want another generation of children to grow up thinking about the way my mother grew up and being told that you can not. And I want to make sure that children can do what everyone else does and the kind of diabetes in their life, instead of working around their diabetes.

And that's why I like the team approach, and that seems to help our children grow well and adapt to diabetes. I mean, it's difficult. It is a lot of work.

And I feel for families because I grew up in a home with type 1 diabetes. I know what it is not to sleep at night. I know what it is always to ask myself. And, then, I think it's good that they have access to people familiar with diabetes and that, hopefully, we can help them on their journey to adulthood.


Video credits to UKHealthCare YouTube channel

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    Leslie Scott, PhD, APRN – UK HealthCare

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