The risk also increases for patients with peripheral arterial disease.
80% of amputations are due to diseases, very often vascular, according to the Association of Defense and Study of Amputees. US researchers wanted to understand if microvascular diseases can also increase the risk of lower limb amputation. They confirm this hypothesis in their results published on the website of the American Heart Association.
The researchers focused on two pathologies: microvascular diseases and peripheral arterial diseases. The former affects the walls of small vessels that are linked to the coronary arteries and the latter is related to an accumulation of lipids on the walls of the arteries. The phenomenon completely or partially blocks one of them and causes disorders of the blood circulation in the body.
The combination of both types of diseases results in an increased risk of amputation
The study looked at a panel of more than 125,000 people followed for about 9 years. A total of 1,185 amputations were recorded over the period. 18% were related to microvascular disease and 22% to peripheral arterial disease.
For researchers, these results confirm that microvascular diseases increase the risk of amputation, but it is even higher in patients with both types of diseases: these people account for 45% of total amputations recorded over the period. These cases require a rigorous medical follow-up. “This is a high-risk group that requires very effective management for the smallest issue,” says Professor Beckman, lead author of the study.
According to the researchers’ estimates, being affected by both diseases increases the risk of amputation by 7.9 compared to patients with diabetes only. This method of comparison has been used because amputation can be one of the consequences of diabetes: people with the disease are seven times more likely to have a lower limb amputated compared to the general population.
Scientists have pushed their calculations and estimated that for people with diabetes with both diseases (microvascular and peripheral arterial), the risk of amputation is multiplied by 15.9.