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Diabetic Foot Ulcer

Diabetic foot is one of the most significant and devastating complications of diabetes, and is defined as a foot affected by ulceration that is associated with neuropathy and/or peripheral arterial disease of the lower limb in a patient with diabetes. The prevalence of diabetic foot ulceration in the diabetic population is 4–10%; the condition is more frequent in older patients. It is estimated that about 5% of all patients with diabetes present with a history of foot ulceration, while the lifetime risk of diabetic patients developing this complication is 15%

The majority (60–80%) of foot ulcers will heal, while 10–15% of them will remain active, and 5–24% of them will finally lead to limb amputation within a period of 6–18 months after the first evaluation.


The most significant risk factors for foot ulceration are:

Other risk factors

For foot ulceration include a previous history of foot ulceration or amputation, visual impairment, diabetic nephropathy, poor glycemic control, and cigarette smoking. Some studies have shown that foot ulceration is more common in men with diabetes than in women.

Social factors, such as low socioeconomic status, poor access to healthcare services, and poor education are also proven to be related to more frequent foot ulceration.


The gold standard for diabetic foot ulcer treatment includes debridement of the wound, management of any infection, revascularization procedures when indicated, and off-loading of the ulcer. Other methods have also been suggested to be beneficial as add-on therapies, such as hyperbaric oxygen therapy, use of advanced wound care products, and negative-pressure wound therapy (NPWT).

Caring for the feet

Preventing foot problems