High-intensity Hospital Utilization Among Adults With Diabetic Foot Ulcers: A Population-based Study

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Can J Diabetes. 2021 Oct 22:S1499-2671(21)00418-4. doi: 10.1016/j.jcjd.2021.10.005. Online ahead of print.


BACKGROUND: Diabetic foot ulcers (DFUs) are common and disabling, necessitating lengthy hospitalizations. In this study we sought to identify potentially modifiable determinants of high-intensity hospital care use among adults with DFUs.

METHODS: Three related case-control studies were conducted using Canada-wide cohorts of adults hospitalized with a DFU from 2011 to 2015. In study 1, cases comprised the top 10% with the highest cumulative 1-year acute care hospital costs; controls were randomly selected from those below the top 10%. Study 2 comprised cases/controls within/below the top 10% for cumulative acute care hospital length of stay (LOS). Study 3 included cases/controls within/below the top 10% for cumulative number of acute care hospitalizations. Using generalized linear models, predictor variables were tested between cases and controls, while adjusting for age and sex.

RESULTS: In study 1, mean acute care costs among 8,971 cases and 3,174 controls were $71,757 and $13,687, respectively. Sepsis conferred the greatest excess cost (mean, $38,790; 95% confidence interval [CI], $34,597 to $43,508), followed by chronic kidney disease (mean, $30,607; 95% CI, $28,389 to $32,825) and major lower limb amputation (mean, $30,884; 95% CI, $28,613 to $33,155). In study 2, mean LOS was higher among 8,477 cases (69 days) than 3,467 controls (12 days). Lower limb amputation conferred the greatest adjusted excess in mean LOS (mean, 28 days; 95% CI, 27 to 28 days). In study 3, there was a mean of 3 hospitalizations among 10,341 cases and 1 among 5,509 controls. Peripheral artery disease conferred the greatest excess number of hospitalizations (1.3 more hospitalizations; 1.2 to 1.4).

CONCLUSIONS: Early aggressive treatment of chronic kidney disease and peripheral artery disease, alongside guideline-based amputation prevention strategies, may reduce high-intensity hospital care use among adults with DFU.

PMID:35527204 | DOI:10.1016/j.jcjd.2021.10.005