Ulcers linked to 'earlier death'

 

Diabetic patients who develop foot ulcers are more likely to die prematurely than those who do not, a study has suggested.

They are also more likely to die from heart attacks and strokes, researchers have found.

While cardiovascular disease is associated with the condition, researchers wanted to examine whether those with diabetic foot ulceration (DFU) were at an increased risk.

They looked at data from eight studies concerning 17,830 diabetic patients. Of those, 3,619 died during the follow-up.

They found that 34% of DFU patients died during the follow-up compared to 17% of diabetic patients who did not develop the complication.

The DFU patients also had an increased risk of fatal heart attacks and strokes, according to the paper published in Diabetologia.

Diabetes can damage a person's blood vessels and nerves, and poor circulation and nerve damage in the feet make people vulnerable to unnoticed cuts or other injuries which could develop into ulcers, or sores.

In severe cases, this can lead to foot or leg amputation.

Researchers said that healthcare professionals needed to improve detection rates and management of foot ulcers.

Robert Hinchliffe from St George's, University of London, who co-led the study, said: "Our research, which is the largest and therefore most reliable study to date, shows that people withdiabetes who have foot ulcers are at considerably higher risk of an earlier death compared to those patients without.

"We suspect that this may be due in part to the effect of infections among those with foot ulcers and the greater co-existence of cardiovascular disease and foot ulcers with diabetesalthough the reasons are not entirely clear."

Professor Kausik Ray, who also co-led the study, added: "Our results warrant further investigation as to whether even greater control of risk factors such as blood pressure, blood glucose and early preventative screening can further reduce mortality among those with foot ulcers.

"There is likely an unmet potential to reduce deaths in this group."

Charity Diabetes UK recently said that specialist diabetes foot care teams needed to be in place in every hospital.

A spokesman said people with diabetes who had foot ulcers should be referred to a multi-disciplinary footcare team within 24 hours.

There are 3.7 million diabetes sufferers in the UK, but the charity estimates that 850,000 people have the disease but do not know it.

PA

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookA delicious collection of 50 meaty main courses
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
SPONSORED FEATURES

ES Rentals

    Independent Dating
    and  

    By clicking 'Search' you
    are agreeing to our
    Terms of Use.

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs General

    Recruitment Genius: Senior Environmental Adviser - Maternity Cover

    £37040 - £43600 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The UK's export credit agency a...

    Recruitment Genius: CBM & Lubrication Technician

    £25000 - £27500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company provides a compreh...

    Recruitment Genius: Care Worker - Residential Emergency Service

    £16800 - £19500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Would you like to join an organ...

    Recruitment Genius: Senior Landscaper

    £25000 - £28000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: In the last five years this com...

    Day In a Page

    The long walk west: they fled war in Syria, only to get held up in Hungary – now hundreds of refugees have set off on foot for Austria

    They fled war in Syria...

    ...only to get stuck and sidetracked in Hungary
    From The Prisoner to Mad Men, elaborate title sequences are one of the keys to a great TV series

    Title sequences: From The Prisoner to Mad Men

    Elaborate title sequences are one of the keys to a great TV series. But why does the art form have such a chequered history?
    Giorgio Armani Beauty's fabric-inspired foundations: Get back to basics this autumn

    Giorgio Armani Beauty's foundations

    Sumptuous fabrics meet luscious cosmetics for this elegant look
    From stowaways to Operation Stack: Life in a transcontinental lorry cab

    Life from the inside of a trucker's cab

    From stowaways to Operation Stack, it's a challenging time to be a trucker heading to and from the Continent
    Kelis interview: The songwriter and sauce-maker on cooking for Pharrell and crying over potatoes

    Kelis interview

    The singer and sauce-maker on cooking for Pharrell
    Refugee crisis: David Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia - will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi?

    Cameron lowered the flag for the dead king of Saudi Arabia...

    But will he do the same honour for little Aylan Kurdi, asks Robert Fisk
    Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

    Our leaders lack courage in this refugee crisis. We are shamed by our European neighbours

    Humanity must be at the heart of politics, says Jeremy Corbyn
    Joe Biden's 'tease tour': Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?

    Joe Biden's 'tease tour'

    Could the US Vice-President be testing the water for a presidential run?
    Britain's 24-hour culture: With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever

    Britain's 24-hour culture

    With the 'leisured society' a distant dream we're working longer and less regular hours than ever
    Diplomacy board game: Treachery is the way to win - which makes it just like the real thing

    The addictive nature of Diplomacy

    Bullying, betrayal, aggression – it may be just a board game, but the family that plays Diplomacy may never look at each other in the same way again
    Lady Chatterley's Lover: Racy underwear for fans of DH Lawrence's equally racy tome

    Fashion: Ooh, Lady Chatterley!

    Take inspiration from DH Lawrence's racy tome with equally racy underwear
    8 best children's clocks

    Tick-tock: 8 best children's clocks

    Whether you’re teaching them to tell the time or putting the finishing touches to a nursery, there’s a ticker for that
    Charlie Austin: Queens Park Rangers striker says ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

    Charlie Austin: ‘If the move is not right, I’m not going’

    After hitting 18 goals in the Premier League last season, the QPR striker was the great non-deal of transfer deadline day. But he says he'd preferred another shot at promotion
    Isis profits from destruction of antiquities by selling relics to dealers - and then blowing up the buildings they come from to conceal the evidence of looting

    How Isis profits from destruction of antiquities

    Robert Fisk on the terrorist group's manipulation of the market to increase the price of artefacts
    Labour leadership: Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea

    'If we lose touch we’ll end up with two decades of the Tories'

    In an exclusive interview, Andy Burnham urges Jeremy Corbyn voters to think again in last-minute plea