In the most comprehensive study to date regarding the impact of the diabetic foot on mortality, researchers have found that patients with diabetic foot ulcers had a significantly increased chance of all-cause mortality than those without a history of the condition.
Patients with diabetic foot ulceration were found to have a significant increase in cardiovascular risk factors, including stroke and heart attacks, as well as all-cause mortality. The study assessed 3,619 events of all-cause mortality and found that there were an additional 58 deaths per 1,000 each year of patients with diabetic foot ulcers.
'Our research, which is the largest and, therefore, most reliable study to date, shows that people with diabetes who have foot ulcers are at considerably higher risk of an earlier death compared to those patients without,' said Robert Hinchliffe from St George's, University of London. '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 diabetes although the reasons are not entirely clear.'