There has been a large drop in the rate of leg and foot amputations among Americans aged 40 and over with diagnosed diabetes, according to a new study by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) published in the February issue of Diabetes Care. The study reports that between 1996 and 2008 the rate of such amputations fell by 65%.
The authors suggest the most likely reason for this large drop in leg and foot amputations among people with diagnosed diabetes is improvements in blood sugar control, foot care and management of diabetes. Reduction in rates of cardiovascular disease is also likely to have contributed, they said.
For their study, the authors used data from the National Hospital Discharge Survey and the National Health Interview Survey.
They report that after adjusting for age, the rate of non-traumatic lower-limb amputations was 3.9 per 1,000 people with diagnosed diabetes in 2008. This compares with a much higher 11.2 per 1,000 in 1996.