Objective: To evaluate ambulatory clinical cases of diabetic foot ulcers (DFUs) and diabetic foot infections (DFIs) in the U.S. from2007 to 2013 and to assess outcomes of emergency department or inpatient (ED/IP) admission, number of clinic visits per year, and physician time spent per visit. Research design and Methods: A cross-sectional historical cohort analysis was conducted by using the nationally representative Centers for Disease Control and Prevention National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey data from 2007 to 2013, including patients age ≥18 years with diabetes and either DFIs or DFUs. Study outcomes were analyzed by using generalized linear models controlling for key demographics and chronic conditions. Results: Across the estimated 5.6 billion ambulatory care visits between 2007 and 2013, 784.8 million involved diabetes and ∼6.7million (0.8%)were forDFUs (0.3%) orDFIs (0.5%). Relative to other ambulatory clinical cases, multivariable analyses indicated that DFUs were associated with a 3.4 times higher odds of direct ED/IP admission (CI 1.01-11.28; P = 0.049), 2.1 times higher odds of referral to another physician (CI 1.14-3.71; P = 0.017), 1.9 times more visits in the past 12 months (CI 1.41-2.42; P < 0.001), and 1.4 times longer time spent per visit with the physician (CI 1.03-1.87; P = 0.033). DFIs were independently associatedwith a 6.7 times higher odds of direct ED referral or IP admission (CI 2.25-19.51; P < 0.001) and 1.5 timesmore visits in the past 12 months (CI 1.14-1.90; P = 0.003). Conclusions: This investigation of an estimated 6.7 million diabetic foot cases indicates markedly greater risks for both ED/IP admissions and number of outpatient visits, with DFUs also associated with a higher odds of referrals to other physicians and longer physician visit times.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
- Advanced and Specialized Nursing