As reported in the Journal of the American Academy of Physician Assistants, (JAAPA, August 2009), chronic wounds affect an estimated 5.7 million patients in the U.S. and cost the healthcare system approximately $20 billion annually. The article's author further notes that optimal wound care requires a portfolio of treatments including the only FDA-approved protein-based topical gel Regranex(R) (becaplermin), bioengineered skin substitutes, hyperbaric oxygen therapy, and subatmospheric wound therapy (also known as negative-pressure wound therapy), as well as institutional support from the growing number of nationwide wound-care centers that offer specialized, multidisciplinary approaches to the treatment of chronic wounds. The author also reports that the cost of treating non-healing ulcers of longer than one year's duration is estimated to range from approximately $20,000 to $27,000, based on the level of advanced care.
As reported in the International Wound Journal, (December, 2007) "one of the most feared complications of diabetes is the lower extremity amputation." Other studies report that diabetes is the leading cause of nontraumatic lower extremity amputations in the U.S., amounting to greater than 75,000 per year or over 200 per day. Limb amputation occurs 10 to 30 times more often in a diabetic person than in the general population. Among the patients with lower extremity amputation procedures, 5% to 17% will die during the operation and 2% to 30% will die within 30 days of surgery. Longer term survival is even worse. Mortality following amputation ranges from 13% to 40% at one year, 35% to 65% at 3 years and 39% to 80% at 5 years. These mortality rates are similar or worse than many common types of cancer including prostate, breast, colon and Hodgkin's disease. Despite these grim statistics, many remain unaware of the very serious nature of non-healing lower extremity ulcers in diabetic patients.
Are we aware of the aids helping to heal these wound? Offer to talk about new products and discuss them.
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