As if loss of taste and smell weren’t frightening enough, a study published by the Journal of the American Podiatric Medical Association (JAPMA) emerged connecting a 1000% increase in lower extremity amputations for those with diabetes to the pandemic.

The review involved 270 patients with diabetic foot problems at a level one trauma center: “The authors found a 12.5 times higher risk of that amputation being a below-knee amputation or higher. Researchers also noted a higher incidence of severe infections and emergent-level cases during the pandemic.”

The cause of the rise seems to be indirectly related to the pandemic, in that most patients were unable to have minor infections evaluated in time due to healthcare facility overload/closures to avoid serious infection and/or amputation. Moreover, fear and anxiety of catching the coronavirus kept high-risk patients away from hospitals and podiatry practices.

Podiatrists are now understanding their vital role during the pandemic. “Education for patients and hospital administrations regarding the staggering risk of amputation if a patient with diabetes delays care” is paramount. With the already concerning mortality rate associated with major diabetic amputations, high-risk patients need to understand the importance of timely care.

Here at Shelby Podiatry, we take all measures recommended by the CDC seriously to help our patients feel safe while receiving immediate care to avoid serious infections, or worse yet, amputation. We ask respectfully that all patients wear masks in our office and practice social distancing.

Quotes from Podiatry Today, “Study Reveals More Than Tenfold Risk Of Amputation Since COVID-19”