A checklist system to score healing progress of diabetic foot ulcers

Fermín R Martínez-De Jesús
International Journal of Lower Extremity Wounds 2010, 9 (2): 74-83
The aim of this article was to validate the checklist contribution of 10 factors relevant to healing in order to score the severity of diabetic foot ulcers. A total of 235 patients from January 2007 to January 2009 were scored according to the Saint Elian Wound Score System from mild to severe (1 to 3) in the following categories: location, topographic aspects, and number of affected zones, ischemia, infection, edema, neuropathy, depth, area, and wound healing phase. The score sum was graded as I (score <or=10, good prognosis for wound healing), II (11-20, partially foot-threatening), and III (21-30, limb- and life-threatening). The 10 categories showed an increasing trend for score severity. Grade I ulcers were associated with an excellent healing rate of 96% (P < .001) and minor amputations prevailed at grade II (11.2%; odds ratio [OR] = 3, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 0.3-23.6). The chances for major amputation (40.6%; OR = 6.1, 95% CI = 2.7-13.4) and mortality (15.6%; OR = 32.7, 95% CI = 3.7-287) were significantly higher for grade III patients (P < .001). The mean time of healing for grades I, II, and III was 5.8 +/- 5.8, 9.4 +/- 10.5, and 14.4 +/- 12.1 weeks, respectively. In all, 80% of patients achieved total wound healing at 8, 20, and 37 weeks for grades I, II, and III, respectively (P < .001; Kaplan-Meier). The results validated the checklist contribution of 10 wound factors to scoring the severity and healing progress of diabetic foot ulcers.

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