Study objective: Diabetic foot ulceration (DFU) is associated with high mortality and morbidity. A multidisciplinary approach has been suggested, but as these patients usually present with various comorbidities, leadership of a multidisciplinary team by internists was initiated. Our aim was to evaluate the impact of the leadership of the multidisciplinary team by internists on the outcomes of patients with DFU. Methods: Outcomes of patients with salvable DFU admitted pre and post introduction of the multidisciplinary team were compared, i.e., a major amputation (above or below the knee), blood stream infection, major medical complications, 30 day mortality, vascular interventions, diabetes control, medication regiments and laboratory results. Results: The cohort included 315 patients, 207 - multidisciplinary pre-period and 108 - multidisciplinary period. During the multidisciplinary period, the rates of major amputations, blood stream infections were found significantly lower than the pre-multidisciplinary period (10% vs. 14%; p = 0.01 and 2% vs. 13%, p = 0.04, respectively). The 30 day mortality rates tended to be lower (5% vs. 11%, p = 0.08). Vascular interventions increased significantly (18% vs. 1%, p<0.01). The diabetes control significantly improved (median glucose levels 163 vs. 185 mg/dl, p = 0.03). Treatment consisting of angiotensin-converting enzyme inhibitors/angiotensin II receptor blockers, statins) were updated and laboratory results at discharge (albumin, CRP) showed improved disease control. Conclusion: The treatment of hospitalized DFU patients by a multidisciplinary team led by internists using a holistic therapeutic approach demonstrated improved clinical outcomes.
- Diabetic foot
- Multidisciplinary team