Lower Limb Amputation Rates Associated With Diabetes Drop, US

An investigation by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, found that between 1996 and 2008, the amount of leg and foot amputations among U.S. individuals, aged 40+ with diagnosed diabetes, decreased by 65%. 
The study, entitled "Declining Rates of Hospitalization for Non-traumatic Lower-Extremity Amputation in the Diabetic Population Aged 40 years or Older: U.S., 1988-2008," is published online in the current issue of Diabetes Care.
In 1996, the age-adjusted rate of leg and foot amputations was 11.2 per 1,000 individuals with diabetes. However, in 2008 this rate fell to 3.9 per 1,000.  Non-traumatic, lower-limb amputations, refers to amputations caused by circulatory problems, rather than those caused by injuries. Circulatory problems are a prevalent adverse effect in individuals suffering with diabetes. 
After examining data from the National Hospital Discharge Survey on non-traumatic lower-limb amputations from the National Health Interview Survey on the prevalence of diagnosed diabetes from 1988-2008, the researchers discovered that the decrease in rates was higher among individuals with diagnosed diabetes than people without the disease. Although, in 2008, the rate was still approximately 8 times higher among those with the disease than those without diabetes. 
Diabetes is the leading cause of non-traumatic, lower-limb amputations, kidney failure, and blindness among adults. In addition, the disease is the 7th leading cause of mortality in the U.S.. Diabetes also increases the risk of strokes, hypertension, and heart attacks.