LITTLE ROCK, Ark. — Wearing the Gown is all about prevention. The more you know, the better you can fight off problems, even those presented by diabetes. But, a little divine intervention doesn't hurt either.
James Langley has been the pastor at the Apostolic Faith Church in Arkadelphia for 30 years, but since 2014 he has been coming here once a week.
“Diabetes — I had callouses to grow on the bottom of my feet,” Langley said.
Pastor Langley isn't in a lot of pain.
“Uh, the most uncomfortable thing is this boot,” Langley said.
He knows if he doesn't get treatment, it can be tragic.
“It starts out with basically a break in the skin and then that skin forms an ulcer and that ulcer can actually deepen,” clinic director Robert Kleinhenz said.
The infection grows, and loss of limbs is often the outcome.
Dr. Kleinhenz leads the fight to keep infection at bay with weekly cleanings.
“The quicker we catch this, the smaller the wound, the better it is,” Dr. Kleinhenz said.
The trouble is, diabetics get no pain signals.
“And the longer you've been diabetic, you tend to lose feeling in your feet,” Dr. Kleinhenz said.
Pastor Langley has had problems on and off again and has had to adjust.
“Got some good people I work with,” Langley said. “And they kind of do my leg work for me. Everything except preachin’.”
Dr. Kleinhenz has a sermon of his own, for diabetics
“They need to always make sure they check their feet several times a day when you get up in the morning and when you got to bed in the evening,” Dr. Kleinhenz said.
Any break in the skin, get into a clinic, and don't expect it to heal quickly.
“I say this gonna take a while to heal, and you think it's gonna take a couple of weeks, and I'm thinking a couple of months,” Langley said. “I feel very fortunate that I discovered the problem when I did because out of all the tragedies it would've been more tragic if I had not come to get help with this.”
Spoken by a man who saves souls on Sunday and looks to save his during the week.
“And hopefully one day it'll be healed,” Langley said.