A new study published in the journal Diabetes Care reveals that the number of lower limb amputations due to diabetes has dropped by more than 65 percent over the last 12 years.
Researchers from Center of Disease Control and Prevention analyzed data from two nationwide studies in the United States and found that the number of lower limb amputations dropped from 11.2 per 1,000 in 1996 to 3.9 per 1,000 people in 2008.
The researchers found that those over 75 years of age had the highest rate of amputation at 6.2 per 1,000 people while men were more likely to get their lower limb amputated compared to women and blacks had higher rates than whites. The researchers said that some of the reasons for the drop could be the better foot care and diabetes management as well as drop in the number of cardiovascular disease cases and better blood sugar control.
"The significant drop in rates of nontraumatic lower-limb amputations among U.S. adults with diagnosed diabetes is certainly encouraging, but more work is needed to reduce the disparities among certain populations", lead researcher Nilka Rios Burrows said.