Wednesday, February 1, 2012

Diabetes Amputation Rates Declined Sharply in US Between 1988 and 2008

Researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report a dramatic reduction in amputations due to diabetes over the last two decades. Read "Declining Rates of Hospitalization for Nontraumatic Lower-Extremity Amputation in the Diabetic Population Aged 40 Years or Older: US, 1988-2008" in Diabetes Care, the journal of the American Diabetes Association. In related press coverage (see Newsday) the authors attribute the decline to earlier diagnosis and preventive foot care. We might suggest advanced wound care centers had an awful lot to do with it, too. From the HyperbaricLink Commentary on our diabetic ulcers page:

Hyperbaric oxygen plays an increasingly important role in the treatment of problem wounds and limb salvage. But access to accredited hyperbaric facilities and certified hyperbaric physicians and technicians is a public health problem. In 2004 as many as two-thirds of nursing home patients with NPUAP Stage II or worse pressure ulcers were not enrolled in wound care treatment programs [NCHS, 2011]. In diabetes-related wounds alone, US hospitals performed 66,000 toe, foot, and leg amputations in 2006 [CDC, 2011], for which health economists have estimated a cost of $3 billion per year [ACA, 2008]. More and more hospitals and health networks today are opening advanced wound care and hyperbaric centers to serve this unmet clinical need. Even if chronic wounds were its only indicated use, HBOT would be assured a place in evidence-based medicine for quality and cost-effective healthcare.

That's our story, and we're sticking to it.

[Image: American Diabetes Association, Diabetes Care website]

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