Study Finds Blacks Are Four Times More Likely To Lose Leg To Diabetes Than Whites; Inadequate Care?


The recent Dartmouth Medical School study indicates that black diabetes patients are more at risk of leg amputations than their white counterparts. The lead author of the study Elliott Fisher points out that the black population run a much higher risk of losing a leg than the white people. Fisher further points out various factors like economy, lifestyle, education and community resources play vital roles behind the difference.

The researchers have selected the cases of leg amputation because it can indicate whether the patients had received proper and adequate diabetes care. Also factors like smoking, exercise or special diabetes shoes can play a role in leg amputation.

The study finds that the amputation rate varies from one state to the other. In states like Louisiana, Mississippi and South Carolina the black people receive a higher rate of leg amputation than Colorado and Nevada. Even the scenario of diabetes test varies from one state to the other. In states like Colorado, Arizona and Kentucky, the black patients are far less likely to get the recommended blood test annually.

According to Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, President and CEO of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation that funded the study, the organization will spend $300 million to fund various medical programs and campaigns to facilitate medical research and to reduce the ethical and racial disparities.

Source: The USA Today

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