Dialysis therapy is associated with an increased incidence of lower-extremity wounds and amputations. We compared the incidence of foot ulcers and amputations before and after the start of dialysis.
We evaluated 150 consecutive diabetic patients receiving dialysis and compared the incidence of foot complications 30 months before and after initiation of hemodialysis. We used claims data for diabetes, ulceration, and dialysis and abstracted medical records to verify diagnoses and dates of ulcers and amputations. We compared initial and cumulative ulcer/amputation incidence to account for multiple events in the same person over time. We used the same formula to determine the incidence rate difference and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) to compare new ulcers and amputations during the study.
There was no significant difference in the incidence of first foot ulcers before (91.7 per 1,000 patient-years; 95% CI, 73.7–112.3 per 1,000 patient-years) and after (82.7; 95% CI, 65.7–102.3) the start of hemodialysis. The incidence of cumulative ulcers was significantly higher before (304.0 per 1,000 patient-years; 95% CI, 270.8–340.2) compared with after (210.7 per 1,000 patient-years; 95% CI, 183.0–240.9) dialysis. There was no difference in the incidence of first amputation before (29.3 per 1,000 patient-years; 95% CI, 1 9.4–41.7 per 1,000 patient-years) and after (37.3 per 1,000 patient-years; 95% CI, 19.4–41.7 per 1,000 patient-years) dialysis or in the cumulative incidence of amputations before (61.3 per 1,000 patient-years; 95% CI, 46.7–8.4 per 1,000 patient-years) and after (58.7 per 1,000 patient-years; 95% CI, 44.5–75.5 per 1,000 patient-years) dialysis.
There was no increase in the incidence of ulcers or amputations after beginning hemodialysis.
There is an increased prevalence of foot ulceration in patients with diabetes, leading to hospitalization. Early wound closure is necessary to prevent further infections and, ultimately, lower-limb amputations. There is no current evidence stating that an elevated preoperative hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) level is a contraindication to skin grafting. The purpose of this review was to determine whether elevated HbA1c levels are a contraindication to the application of skin grafts in diabetic patients.
A retrospective review was performed of 53 consecutive patients who underwent split-thickness skin graft application to the lower extremity between January 1, 2012, and December 31, 2015. A uniform surgical technique was used across all of the patients. A comparison of HbA1c levels between failed and healed skin grafts was reviewed.
Of 43 surgical sites (41 patients) that met the inclusion criteria, 27 healed with greater than 90% graft take and 16 had a skin graft that failed. There was no statistically significant difference in HbA1c levels in the group that healed a skin graft compared with the group in which skin graft failed to adhere.
Preliminary data suggest that an elevated HbA1c level is not a contraindication to application of a skin graft. The benefits of early wound closure outweigh the risks of skin graft application in patients with diabetes.
Microvascular dysfunction is an important component of the pathologic processes that occur in diabetic foot disease. The endothelial abnormalities observed in patients with diabetes mellitus are poorly understood, and evidence suggests that endothelial dysfunction could be involved in the pathogenesis of diabetic macroangiopathy and microangiopathy. With the advent of insulin replacement in the early 1900s and increased efforts toward metabolic control of diabetes, long-term complications of this disease have become apparent. These late-term complications are primarily disorders of the vascular system. This article reviews the process of microvascular dysfunction and how it may relate to the pathogenesis of diabetic foot problems. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 96(3): 245–252, 2006)
Data from 37 patients who underwent a transmetatarsal amputation from January 1993 to April 1996 were reviewed. The mean age and diabetes duration of the subjects were 54.9 (± 13.2) years and 16.6 (± 8.9) years, respectively. The follow-up period averaged 42.1 (± 11.2) months. At the time of follow-up, 29 (78.4%) of the 37 patients still had foot salvage, 8 (21.6%) had progressed to below-the-knee amputation, and 15 (40.5%) had undergone lower-extremity revascularization. Twelve (80%) of the 15 revascularized patients preserved their transmetatarsal amputation level at a follow-up of 36.4 months. The authors concluded that at a maximum of 3 years follow-up after initial amputation, transmetatarsal amputation was a successful amputation level. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 91(10): 533-535, 2001)
Persons with diabetes have a higher incidence of fractures compared with persons without diabetes. However, there is little published information concerning the deleterious effect of late-stage diabetes on fracture healing. There are no studies using animal models that evaluate the effect of advanced diabetes on fracture healing. The purpose of our study was to evaluate cytokine expression, specifically macrophage inflammatory protein 1 (MIP-1) and vascular endothelial growth factor, in fracture healing in a type 2 diabetes rat model.
We evaluated biomarker expression after femur fracture using a rat model. The two groups consisted of 24 Zucker diabetic rats (study group) and 12 Zucker lean rats (control group). An independent reviewer was used to assess delayed union. We evaluated serum samples 2, 4, 7, and 14 days after surgery for MIP-1, vascular endothelial growth factor, leptin, and other cytokine levels.
At 3 weeks, Kaplan-Meier estimates showed that 45.8% of femur fractures in Zucker diabetic rats had healed, whereas 81.8% of those in Zucker lean rats had healed (P = .02). A logistic regression model to predict fast healing that included the three cytokines and diabetes status showed that the only factor achieving significance was MIP-1α. Vascular endothelial growth factor was the only biomarker to show significance compared with delayed healing.
These results confirm significant differences in biomarker expression between diabetic and nondiabetic rats during bone healing. The key factors for bone healing may appear early in the healing process, whereas differences in diabetes versus nondiabetes are seen later in the healing process. Increased levels of MIP-1α were associated with the likelihood of delayed healing.
We aimed to evaluate surrogate markers commonly used in the literature for diabetic foot osteomyelitis remission after initial treatment for diabetic foot infections (DFIs).
Thirty-five patients with DFIs were prospectively enrolled and followed for 12 months. Osteomyelitis was determined from bone culture and histologic analysis initially and for recurrence. Fisher exact and χ2 tests were used for dichotomous variables and Student t and Mann-Whitney U tests for continuous variables (α = .05).
Twenty-four patients were diagnosed as having osteomyelitis and 11 as having soft-tissue infections. Four patients (16.7%) with osteomyelitis had reinfection based on bone biopsy. The success of osteomyelitis treatment varied based on the surrogate marker used to define remission: osteomyelitis infection (16.7%), failed wound healing (8.3%), reulceration (20.8%), readmission (16.7%), amputation (12.5%). There was no difference in outcomes among patients who were initially diagnosed as having osteomyelitis versus soft-tissue infections. There were no differences in osteomyelitis reinfection (16.7% versus 45.5%; P = .07), wounds that failed to heal (8.3% versus 9.1%; P = .94), reulceration (20.8% versus 27.3%; P = .67), readmission for DFIs at the same site (16.7% versus 36.4%; P = .20), amputation at the same site after discharge (12.5% versus 36.4%; P = .10). Osteomyelitis at the index site based on bone biopsy indicated that failed therapy was 16.7%. Indirect markers demonstrated a failure rate of 8.3% to 20.8%.
Most osteomyelitis markers were similar to markers in soft-tissue infection. Commonly reported surrogate markers were not shown to be specific to identify patients who failed osteomyelitis treatment compared with patients with soft-tissue infections. Given this, these surrogate markers are not reliable for use in practice to identify osteomyelitis treatment failure.
Lower-extremity pathologic abnormalities have been common in military recruits for many years. Many of these conditions can become chronic and persist even after retiring from military service. We hypothesized that certain foot abnormalities are more prevalent in veterans versus nonveterans. The purpose of this study was to evaluate what foot and ankle disorders are associated with veteran status while controlling for other demographic factors.
The National Health Interview Survey (Podiatry Supplement) from 1990 was used for this secondary data analysis. The data were divided into veterans and nonveterans, and the prevalence of podiatric medical problems, including callus, flatfoot deformity, bunion deformity, hammer toe deformity, arthritis, and sprain, was evaluated for each group.
Flatfoot deformity and arthritis were significantly more prevalent in veterans versus nonveterans in the United States. Bunion deformity was significantly more prevalent in male veterans than in male nonveterans. Male veterans were less likely than male nonveterans to have sprains, and female veterans were more likely than their nonveteran counterparts to have sprains.
These results may help us understand the potential risk factors for podiatric medical problems and may be used for formulating prevention programs. (J Am Podiatr Med Assoc 101(4): 323–330, 2011)
Objective: To investigate the predictive value of erythrocyte sedimentation rate (ESR) and C-reactive protein (CRP) in persons with and without diabetes with osteomyelitis (OM).
Methods: We evaluated 455 patients in a retrospective cohort study of patients admitted to the hospital with diabetic foot OM (n = 177), diabetic foot soft-tissue infections (STIs) (n = 176), nondiabetic OM (n = 51), and nondiabetic STIs (n = 51). Infection diagnosis was determined through bone culture, histopathologic examination for OM, and/or imaging (magnetic resonance imaging/single-photon emission computed tomography) for STI. The optimal cutoff values of ESR and CRP in predicting OM were determined by receiver operating characteristic curve analysis. Sensitivity, specificity, positive and negative predictive values, and positive and negative likelihood ratios were determined through contingency tables.
Results: In persons without diabetes with STI or OM, the mean ESR and CRP differences were 10.0 mm/h and 2.6 mg/dL, respectively. In contrast, persons with diabetes had higher levels of each: 24.8 mm/h and 6.8 mg/dL, respectively. As a result, ESR and CRP predicted OM better in patients with diabetes. However, when patients were stratified by neuropathy status, ESR remained predictive of OM in diabetic patients with neuropathy (75% sensitivity, 58% specificity) but not in diabetic patients without neuropathy (50% sensitivity, 44% specificity). Also, CRP remained predictive irrespective of neuropathy status. A similar trend was observed in patients without diabetes.
Conclusions: Previous studies have reported that ESR and CRP are predictive of OM. However, this study suggests that neuropathy influences the predictive value of inflammatory biomarkers. The underlying mechanisms require further study.
Background: To evaluate clinicians' compliance to follow national guidelines for tetanus vaccination prophylaxis in high-risk foot patients. Methods: We retrospectively evaluated 114 consecutive patients between June 2011 and March 2019 who presented with a foot infection resulting from a puncture injury through the emergency department. Eighty-three patients had diabetes mellitus and 31 patients did not have diabetes mellitus. Electronic medical records were used to collect a broad range of study data on patient demographics, previous medical history, previous tetanus immunization history and tetanus status upon presentation to the emergency department (ED), peripheral arterial disease, sensory neuropathy, laboratory values, and clinical / surgical outcomes. Results: 46.5% of the patients who presented to the ED with a puncture wound did not have up-to-date tetanus immunization. Of those patients, 79.2% received a tetanus-containing vaccine booster, 3.8% received intramuscular tetanus immunoglobulins (TIG), 3.8% received both tetanus-containing vaccine booster and TIG, and 20.8% received no form of tetanus prophylaxis. When comparing data between patients with and without diabetes, there were no statistical significant differences in tetanus prophylaxis. Conclusion: Guidelines for tetanus prophylaxis amongst high-risk foot patients in this study center are not followed in all patients. Patients with DM are at high risks of exposure to tetanus, we recommend physicians to take a detailed tetanus immunization history and vaccinate them if tetanus history is unclear.