Patients with diabetes may want to think twice about their footwear. A Caribbeanstudy found that inadequate footwear triples the risk of lower-leg amputation. Reportingin Diabetes Care (November 2004), the researchers said that the overall rate of lowerextremityamputation among diabetes patients was 936 per 10,000 patients. The rate is3 times higher than for similar Caribbean migrants to the United Kingdom.
The study pointed to men and single individuals having a higher risk of amputation,influenced by how long the individual had diabetes and how well blood glucose levelswere controlled. The researchers reported that the chance of lower-leg amputation riskwas almost tripled in men going barefoot, doubled in women regularly wearing sneakersto work, increased 4-fold by wearing sneakers to town, and doubled by wearing rubberthong sandals.