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March 7, 2001

Complications

Question from London, UK:

I am a 29 year old male diagnosed with type 1 on Christmas Eve (lucky me!) and have subsequently had relatively tight control. I am worried about complications in later life, particularly amputations. I broke my foot in 13 places five years ago, and although there was no compound/open fracture there was obviously a lot of soft flesh trauma. In your opinion, has this trauma to bone, flesh, tendon damage, etc. elevated the risk of amputation in later life?

Answer:

There is no relationship between trauma and future diabetic complications. Complications are mostly related to long term metabolic control and to smoking habits. You say your control has been tight over time, so if you don’t smoke, I think you’re at a relatively low risk for chronic complications.

MS