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SLPG's Blog

Diabetic Amputation Numbers Dropping

Diabetic Amputation Rates Fall

A recent article in the journal of Lower Extremity Review summarized a Spanish study showing a significant decrease in ulceration and amputation rates in diabetic patients wearing specialized diabetic shoes and orthotics. The study published in the American Podiatric Medical Association demonstrated that diabetic patients who were prescribed diabetic shoes and custom foot orthotics showed a reduction in reulceration rates from 79% to 15% over a two year period. This same group of diabetic patients also showed amputation rates decline from 54% to 6% during the same period.

Diabetic patients are at greater risk for developing an open sore (ulceration) to the feet related to skin injury and insensitivity (neuropathy) that can delay early recognition and treatment. Healthcare providers can educate diabetic patients as to their level of risk for developing ulcerations by screening their diabetic patients. The Lower Extremity Amputation Prevention program (LEAP), developed by the Hansen’s Disease Center, is a great tool for determining if a diabetic patient is at high risk for developing an ulceration and whether or not they would be a good candidate for prescription diabetic shoe wear as well as custom foot orthotics.

For more information on the diabetic foot and a copy of the LEAP screening form go to: http://sanluispodiatrygroup.com/?page=patient_education&category=00009&article=00016

Your treating physician can use the LEAP screening form for your risk screening.

Gonzalez Fernandez ML, Lozano RM, Gonzalez-Quijano Diaz MI, et al. How effective is orthotic treatment in patients with recurrent diabetic foot ulcers? J Am Podiat Med Assoc 2013; 103(4):281-290