Counting the cost of diabetic hospital admissions from a multi-ethnic population in Trinidad.
ABSTRACT Many middle-income countries are experiencing an increase in diabetes mellitus but patterns of morbidity and resource use from diabetes in developing countries have not been well described. We evaluated hospital admission with diabetes among different ethnic groups in Trinidad. We compiled a register of all patients with diabetes admitted to adult medical, general surgical, and ophthalmology wards at Port of Spain Hospital, Trinidad. During 26 weeks, 1447 patients with diabetes had 1722 admissions. Annual admission rates, standardized to the World Population, for the catchment population aged 30-64 years were 1031 (95% CI 928 to 1134) per 100,000 in men and 1354 (1240 to 1468) per 100,000 in women. Compared with the total population, admission rates were 33% higher in the Indian origin population and 47% lower in those of mixed ethnicity. The age-standardized rate of amputation with diabetes in the general population aged 30-64 years was 54 (37 to 71) per 100,000. The hospital admission fatality rate was 8.9% (95%CI 7.6% to 10.2%). Mortality was associated with increasing age, admission with hyperglycaemia, elevated serum creatinine, cardiac failure or stroke and with lower-limb amputation during admission. Diabetes accounted for 13.6% of hospital admissions and 23% of hospital bed occupancy. Admissions associated with disorders of blood glucose control or foot problems accounted for 52% of diabetic hospital bed occupancy. The annual cost of admissions with diabetes was conservatively estimated at TT+ 10.66 million (UK 1.24 million pounds). In this community diabetes admission rates were high and varied according to the prevalence of diabetes. Admissions, fatalities and resource use were associated with acute and chronic complications of diabetes. Investing in better quality preventive clinical care for diabetes might provide an economically advantageous policy for countries like Trinidad and Tobago.
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ABSTRACT: Background: The aim of conventional medical therapy in diabetic foot infections is to control infection, thereby reducing amputation rates, infectious morbidity, and death. Any delay incurred during a trial of home remedies could allow an infection to progress unchecked, increasing the risk of these adverse outcomes. This study sought to determine the effects of delayed operative interventions and amputations in these patients. Methods: A questionnaire study targeting all consecutive patients admitted with diabetic foot infection was carried out over 1 year. Two groups were defined, ie, a medical therapy group comprising patients who sought medical attention after detecting their infection and a home remedy group comprising those who voluntarily chose to delay medical therapy in favor of home remedies. The patients were followed throughout their hospital admissions. We recorded the duration of hospitalization and number of operative debridements and amputations performed. Results: There were 695 patients with diabetic foot infections, comprising 382 in the medical therapy group and 313 in the home remedy group. Many were previously hospitalized for foot infections in the medical therapy (78%) and home remedy (74.8%) groups. The trial of home remedies lasted for a mean duration of 8.9 days. The home remedy group had a longer duration of hospitalization (16.3 versus 8.5 days; P<0.001), more operative debridements (99.7% versus 94.5%; P<0.001), and more debridements per patient (2.85 versus 2.45; P<0.001). Additionally, in the home remedy group, there was an estimated increase in expenditure of US $10,821.72 US per patient and a trend toward more major amputations (9.3% versus 5.2%; P=0.073). Conclusion: There are negative outcomes when patients delay conventional medical therapy in favour of home remedies to treat diabetic foot infections. These treatments need not be mutually exclusive. We encourage persons with diabetes who wish to try home remedies to seek medical advice in addition as a part of holistic care.Risk Management and Healthcare Policy 11/2014; 7(1):239-243. DOI:10.2147/RMHP.S72236
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ABSTRACT: BackgroundThis study aimed to evaluate the role of acanthosis nigricans (AN) as a marker of Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (T2DM) by studying its prevalence and relationship with age, ethnicity, anthropometry and other risk factors for T2DM in the Trinidadian population.Methods311 successive adult patients with T2DM were recruited at diabetic clinics and inpatient wards across Trinidad. The presence, severity and texture of AN at the neck were assessed. Demographic, clinical and anthropometric characteristics were also measured, and logistic regression was used to model their relationship with presence of AN.ResultsThe mean (SD) age was 58.1 years (12.6). 55.6% were female. 61.1% were East Indian, 24.4% African and 14.5% mixed ethnicity. The mean (SD) BMI was 27.3 kg/m2 (6.0) and the mean (SD) waist circumference was 96.7 cm (14.2). Prevalence of AN was 52.7% (95% CI 47.2, 58.3).There was a greater odds of AN among diabetic patients who were: younger (p < 0.001); female (OR 1.67; 95% CI 1.06, 2.62); or East Indian rather than African (0.45; 0.26, 0.77) or mixed (0.43; 0.22, 0.84) descendents. There was a greater age-, sex- and ethnicity-adjusted odds of AN among those: overweight (3.98; 2.10, 7.55) or obese (8.31; 3.84, 18.00) versus normal BMI; centrally obese (4.72; 2.65, 8.43); with history of hypertension (2.19; 1.27, 3.79) or history of hypercholesterolemia (1.72; 1.02, 2.90), but there was no evidence of this demographic-adjusted association (p > 0.4) between AN and history of previous MI or CVA, family history of T2DM, T2DM treatment regimen, duration of T2DM or random blood glucose.On further multivariable analysis, only age, sex, ethnicity, BMI and waist circumference were independently associated with AN (p < 0.05) and the effect of BMI varied with ethnicity.ConclusionsThere was a high prevalence of AN both overall and across age, sex and ethnic groups of diabetic patients. AN exhibited much potential as a valuable addition to T2DM risk assessment in the Trinidadian and similar settings.Diabetology and Metabolic Syndrome 07/2014; 6(77). DOI:10.1186/1758-5996-6-77 · 2.50 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Aim There has been little focus on self-directed treatment for lower limb wounds, although it a common practice among persons with diabetes across the Caribbean. We sought to document this practice in a Caribbean nation. Methods We prospectively interviewed all consecutive patients with diabetes who were admitted with lower limb wounds at the San Fernando General Hospital in Trinidad and Tobago over a period of 18 months. A questionnaire was used to collect data on patient demographics, use of self-directed treatment, and details of these treatments. Results Of 839 persons with diabetes who were admitted with infected lower limb wounds, 344 (41%) admitted to self-directed treatment before seeking medical attention. These patients were predominantly male (59.9%) at a mean age of 56.4±12.4 years. The practice was most common in persons of Afro-Caribbean descent (45.9%) and those with type 2 diabetes (93.9%). In this group, 255 (74.4%) patients were previously admitted to hospital for lower limb infections. And of those, 32 (12.6%) had a prior amputation and 108 (42.4%) had at least one operative debridement specifically for foot infections. Conclusion Caribbean cultural practices may be an important contributor to negative outcomes when treating lower limb wounds in persons with diabetes. Despite being acutely aware of the potentially devastating consequences of inadequate treatment, 41% of our patients with diabetes still opted to use self-directed treatment for lower limb wounds. This deserves further study in order to give a more tailored approach in care delivery.Patient Preference and Adherence 09/2014; 8:1173-7. DOI:10.2147/PPA.S68680 · 1.49 Impact Factor