Malnutrition in type 2 diabetic patients does not affect healing of foot ulcers
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Protein–energy malnutrition is known to be involved in wound healing. While wound healing in patients with diabetic foot ulcers (DFU) is a complex and multifactorial process, the role of malnutrition in this case has rarely been explored. The objective of this study was to determine whether the nutritional status of diabetic patients influences the healing of DFU.
48 patients were included in this prospective, single-center study. All patients with comorbidities or factors involving malnutrition or influencing biological measurements were excluded. Patients were followed up for 24 weeks.
The malnutrition rate was 29.2% at baseline and 25.6% at the end of the study. The difference was not significant. Of the 35 patients with wound healing, 29% were undernourished at inclusion and 17% at the end of the study. Of the 12 patients without wound healing, 50% were undernourished at inclusion, and 42% at the end of the study. These differences were not significant. Rate and speed of wound healing were not associated with malnutrition at inclusion. 15% of patients without malnutrition at baseline had final malnutrition.
We demonstrated that wound healing was not affected by the initial presence of malnutrition. In our study, there is no evidence to support nutritional intervention to improve wound healing in diabetic patients. Nevertheless, malnutrition is responsible for an increase in morbidity and mortality and it is essential to identify malnutrition systematically for all patients with DFU, initially and during follow-up to treat it quickly and efficiently.
KeywordsDiabetic foot ulcer Malnutrition Type 2 diabetes Healing
This work was supported by the Centre Hospitalier Universitaire de Dijon (AOI 2013), and proof reading services were provided by Suzanne Rankin (DRCI).
Compliance with ethical standards
Conflict of interest
All authors have nothing to disclose.
Research involving human and/or animal rights
All procedures performed involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.
Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.
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