As the number and complexity of operative techniques taught at U.S. podiatric medicine and surgical residencies (PMSR) with the added credential in reconstructive rearfoot and ankle (RRA) surgery has continued to increase, so to has the use of intraoperative fluoroscopy. The purpose of the present prospective observational pilot study was to quantify and compare the shallow dose equivalent (SDE), deep dose equivalent (DDE), and lens of the eye dose equivalent (LDE) exposures for podiatric medicine and surgery residents at a single PMSR-RRA over 12 consecutive months. Shallow-dose equivalent, DDE, and LDE exposures (in millirems) were measured using Landauer Luxel dosimeters from July of 2018 to July of 2019. Dosimeters were exchanged monthly, and mean monthly/annual SDE, DDE, and LDE exposures were calculated and compared. Overall, residents averaged 19 operative cases per month and 222 per year. More than half (53%) required intraoperative fluoroscopy, for which a mini C-arm was used in most cases. Monthly SDE, DDE, and LDE exposures averaged 7.3, 9.3, and 7.0 mrem, respectively; whereas annual SDE, DDE, and LDE exposures averaged 87.3, 112, and 84 mrem, respectively. No significant monthly (P = 1.0, P = .70, and P = .74) or annual (P = .67, P = .67, and P = .33) differences were identified between residents. The annual SDE, DDE, and LDE for residents at a single PMSR-RRA were well below the recommended dose limits of 50,000 mrem/year (SDE), 5,000 mrem/year (DDE), and 15,000 mrem/year (LDE) set by the National Council on Radiation Protection. However, given that the stochastic effects from low levels of ionizing radiation are cumulative, not well studied long-term, and relate both to the degree and duration of exposure, mini-C arm fluoroscopy, radiation tracking, and use of personal protective equipment provide simple means for residents to reduce any long-term potential for risk.
Background: Because value-based care is critical to the Affordable Care Act success, we forecasted inpatient costs and the potential impact of podiatric medical care on savings in the diabetic population through improved care quality and decreased resource use during implementation of the health reform initiatives in California.
Methods: We forecasted enrollment of diabetic adults into Medicaid and subsidized health benefit exchange programs using the California Simulation of Insurance Markets (CalSIM) base model. Amputations and admissions per 1,000 diabetic patients and inpatient costs were based on the California Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development 2009-2011 inpatient discharge files. We evaluated cost in three categories: uncomplicated admissions, amputations during admissions, and discharges to a skilled nursing facility. Total costs and projected savings were calculated by applying the metrics and cost to the projected enrollment.
Results: Diabetic patients accounted for 6.6% of those newly eligible for Medicaid or health benefit exchange subsidies, with a 60.8% take-up rate. We project costs to be $24.2 million in the diabetic take-up population from 2014 to 2019. Inpatient costs were 94.3% higher when amputations occurred during the admission and 46.7% higher when discharged to a skilled nursing facility. Meanwhile, 61.0% of costs were attributed to uncomplicated admissions. Podiatric medical services saved 4.1% with a 10% reduction in admissions and amputations and an additional 1% for every 10% improvement in access to podiatric medical care.
Conclusions: When implementing the Affordable Care Act, inclusion of podiatric medical services on multidisciplinary teams and in chronic-care models featuring prevention helps shift care to ambulatory settings to realize the greatest cost savings.
Toe pressures and the toe brachial index (TBI) represent possible screening tools for peripheral arterial disease; however, limited evidence is available regarding their reliability. The aim of this study was to determine intratester and intertester reliability of toe systolic pressure and the TBI in participants with and without diabetes performed by podiatric physicians.
Two podiatric physicians performed toe and brachial pressure measurements on 80 participants, 40 with and 40 without diabetes, during two testing sessions using photoplethysmography and Doppler probe. Intraclass correlation coefficients (ICCs) and 95% limits of agreement were determined.
In people with diabetes, intratester reliability of toe pressure measurement was excellent for both testers (ICCs, 0.84 and 0.82). Reliability of the TBI was good (ICCs, 0.72 and 0.75) and brachial pressure fair (ICCs, 0.43 and 0.55). The intertester reliability of toe pressure (ICC, 0.82) and the TBI (ICC, 0.80) was excellent. Intertester reliability of brachial pressure was reduced in people with diabetes (ICC, 0.49). In age-matched participants, intratester reliability of toe pressure measurement was excellent for both testers (ICCs, 0.83 and 0.87), and reliability of the TBI (ICCs, 0.74 and 0.80) and brachial pressure (ICCs, 0.73 and 0.78) was good to excellent. Intertester reliability of toe pressure (ICC, 0.84), the TBI (ICC, 0.81), and brachial pressure (ICC, 0.77) was excellent.
Toe pressures and the TBI demonstrated excellent reliability in people with and without diabetes and can be an effective component of lower-extremity vascular screening. However, wide limits of agreement relative to blood pressure values for both cohorts indicate that results should be interpreted with caution.
Not all abstracts accepted for oral presentation at the annual conference of the American Podiatric Medical Association ultimately go on to successfully navigate the peer-review process to achieve journal publication despite its obvious merits. The purpose of the present study was to identify the factors associated with and barriers to journal publication and time to publication for oral abstracts from the American Podiatric Medical Association conference from 2010 to 2014. Databases containing information on the abstracts were procured and predictor variables categorized as abstract- or author-specific. Bivariate analysis was conducted using the Mann-Whitney U test, Fisher's exact test, chi-square test of independence, or Spearman rank correlation. Multivariable logistic regression and generalized linear regression models were used to analyze predictor variables. A questionnaire was distributed to the primary authors of any unpublished abstracts to determine the current status of the abstract, in addition to the reasons for the failure to pursue or achieve journal publication. Overall, oral abstracts by authors without a formal research degree were published more often than abstracts by authors with a research degree, as were funded projects (P = .031). No other associations were identified between any of the abstract- and author-specific variables and successful conversion of an oral abstract to a journal publication or the time to publication. Six barriers questionnaires were completed. At the time of the survey, two oral abstracts had since achieved publication, two had been submitted for publication but were rejected, and two had never been submitted. The principal reason cited by the authors for the failure to pursue or achieve journal publication was insufficient time for manuscript preparation.
This study was designed to determine the prevalence of fibromyalgia in the podiatric patient population. A total of 355 consecutive patients in a podiatric outpatient clinic were evaluated to determine whether they met the criteria for this condition. Eight of the 355 patients were diagnosed with the condition. Thirty-five of 355 patients presented with plantar heel or arch pain. Seven of these 35 patients satisfied the criteria for fibromyalgia. This small study indicates that fibromyalgia may be more prevalent in podiatric patients than previously realized and must be considered in patients presenting with foot pain, especially if that pain is in the area of the plantar aspect of the heel or arch.
This investigation presents a review of all of the clinical outcome measures used by authors and published in the Journal of the American Podiatric Medical Association and the Journal of Foot and Ankle Surgery from January 1, 2011, to December 31, 2015. Of 1,336 articles published during this time frame, 655 (49.0%) were classified as original research and included in this analysis. Of these 655 articles, 151 (23.1%) included at least one clinical outcome measure. Thirty-seven unique clinical outcome scales were used by authors and published during this period. The most frequently reported scales in the 151 included articles were the American Orthopaedic Foot and Ankle Society scales (54.3%; n = 82), visual analog scale (35.8%; n = 54), Medical Outcomes Study Short Form Health Survey (any version) (10.6%; n = 16), Foot Function Index (5.3%; n = 8), Maryland Foot Score (4.0%; n = 6), and Olerud and Molander scoring system (4.0%; n = 6). Twenty-four articles (15.9%) used some form of original/subjective measure of patient satisfaction/expectation. The results of this investigation detail the considerable variety of clinical outcome measurement tools used by authors in the Journal of the American Podiatric Medical Association and the Journal of Foot and Ankle Surgery and might support the need for a shift toward the consistent use of a smaller number of valid, reliable, and clinically useful scales in the podiatric medical literature.
Many podiatric physicians will never be sued during their careers, but if a suit happens, it can be one of the most stressful times in their lives. After contacting the insurance carrier, the podiatric physician must then wait as the case develops through the legal system. The deposition is when the podiatric physician will be asked questions about the case. It is important to remember to carefully answer the questions asked. Once in the trial stage, the appearance and testimony of the podiatric physician will be important in the jury's eyes. If a decision is not in your favor, you may be able to appeal the case to a higher court. Some cases may not go to trial as they could be settled or arbitrated along the way. By listening to your attorney and following the attorney's advice and recommendations, the legal process will be easier to manage and understand.
This study examined the relationships between social and demographic characteristics (ie, gender, race, year in school, desired residency choice, and socioeconomic background), motivations for entering the profession of podiatric medicine (extrinsic and intrinsic rewards), and negative attitudes toward treating elderly patients. The study used ordinary least squares multiple regression models to analyze data from a random, national sample of 448 podiatric medical students. In particular, the ordinary least squares models were developed to determine the independent effect of intrinsic and extrinsic rewards on negative attitudes toward treating elderly patients. Consistent with the study hypotheses, after adjusting for social and demographic characteristics, the study found extrinsic rewards to have strong positive relationships with negative attitudes toward treating elderly patients, and intrinsic rewards to have strong negative relationships with negative attitudes toward treating elderly patients. The authors discussed the implications of the findings for podiatric physicians and educators training podiatric medical students.
Randomized trials must be of high methodological quality to yield credible, actionable findings. The main aim of this project was to evaluate whether there has been an improvement in the methodological quality of randomized trials published in the Journal of the American Podiatric Medical Association (JAPMA).
Randomized trials published in JAPMA during a 15-year period (January 1999 to December 2013) were evaluated. The methodological quality of randomized trials was evaluated using the PEDro scale (scores range from 0 to 10, with 0 being lowest quality). Linear regression was used to assess changes in methodological quality over time.
A total of 1,143 articles were published in JAPMA between January 1999 and December 2013. Of these, 44 articles were reports of randomized trials. Although the number of randomized trials published each year increased, there was only minimal improvement in their methodological quality (mean rate of improvement = 0.01 points per year). The methodological quality of the trials studied was typically moderate, with a mean ± SD PEDro score of 5.1 ± 1.5. Although there were a few high-quality randomized trials published in the journal, most (84.1%) scored between 3 and 6.
Although there has been an increase in the number of randomized trials published in JAPMA, there is substantial opportunity for improvement in the methodological quality of trials published in the journal. Researchers seeking to publish reports of randomized trials should seek to meet current best-practice standards in the conduct and reporting of their trials.