Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Statistics on Life Expectancy After Diabetes Leg Amputation from Gangrene

One question I was asked recently is was... What are the statistics on life expectancy after diabetes leg amputation from gangrene?

Well, I wish I had good news. Whenever a loved one gets gangrene, it can be traumatic. Not just for the diabetic who winds up with an amputation, but the spouse as well. The kids, the whole family take a beating emotionally. They see the foot turn black, they smell the foul odor. They watch their loved one go from a lively person to someone who will be luckey to ever walk with a prosthetic leg.

Dancing on your 50th wedding anniversary..nope. Going for 18 holes of golf..nope. Running down the street to teach your grandson to fly a kite...nope. So the patient sees all these things that were taken for granted, drifting away. And the family sees it too. Then they start to wonder about the bigger picture. How long can you live after an amputation?

The statistics regarding diabetic life expectancy after an amputation related to diabetes complications (such as gangrene, diabetic foot infections, and bone infections (osteomyelitis)) are quite bad. Every 30 seconds a limb somewhere is amputated as a consequence of diabetes.

In fact, we know that diabetes makes you 46 times more likely you will have an amputation. Within one year after a diabetic foot amputation, 26.7% will have another amputation. Three years after the first diabetic amputation, 48.3% will have another amputation. Within 5 years of a diabetes related amputation, 60.7% will have another amputation.

If that isn't bad enough, diabetics with amputations don’t live very long. We know that about 50% of all diabetics with an amputation are dead 3 years after the amputation.

65% of all of those with a diabetic amputation are dead 5 years.

In spite of this, there is hope... most are preventable. Watch your blood sugar. Check your feet every day and see a podiatrist, podiatric surgeon, or foot surgeon specializing in diabetic limb salvage if you start to get any open sore or wounds on your feet. Do not wait until it is infected.

With these simple interventions you can keep your feet. And maybe you will dancing on your 50th after all.

Dr. Christopher Segler is an award winning diabetic foot surgeon, author and inventor. He is the founder of a groundbreaking private consulting firm that specializes in diabetic amputation prevention. If you or someone you care about has diabetes, you can learn more by simply requesting your FREE report “No Leg Left To Stand On: The Secrets Insurance Companies Don’t Want You To Know About Diabetic Foot Amputation” at


Anonymous said...

I am so glad I found your article, DR. I only wish I had found it 6 months ago. I had a very unrealistic opinion about this subject. I actually thought ," In this day and age certainly diabetics don't seriously have to worry about losing limbs to diabetes". Boy ! Was I wrong ! On March 8th ,2011,my 54 year old brother went to the hospital thinking he needed a muscle relaxer for the pain in his legs. He too was wrong. Due to his diabetes he had to have his right leg amputated, just above the knee. one week to the day later, he lost the other. After about 2 months in the hospital and rehab facility , he developed an infection and was back in I.C.U. It would be another three and a half months before he would see his own home and family and friends ( on his terms) again. Then it was back to the hospital with his right hand and particularly his middle finger turning black. He was placed on dialisis and anyway to the point... he never came home again. It was ONE day shy of 5 months , my brother drew his last breath.
Please keep writing and teaching , Dr. I feel our ignorance killed my brother and the only thing I think now about ," This day and age ", is
Ignorance is Not bliss... it is deadly and inexcusable.
Thank you again, Dr.
Terri Kendall

diabeteshealthcare said...

As soon as you got to know about the diabetes and detect the Symptoms of diabetes of diabetes, you should start taking the balance diet and regulary visit the physician.

How to prevent diabetes

penelopa said...

I feel like crying reading this. My fiance lost his leg 5 years ago to diabetes(lbk). From that point to today he had 4 fingers removed one by one. Now his right leg is going septic and I know he will loose it too very soon. Despite this we are getting married this year but but keeping in mind the bleak life expectancy after amputation and the fact he has already passed 5 year mark I realise that our future is looking bad.

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