Study Finds Amputation Rate 10 Times Higher for Poor Patients


UCLA researchers recently released a study that found poor Californians with diabetes were up to 10 times more likely to undergo amputation as a consequence of diabetes than wealthier patients.

The study, presented in the magazine Health Affairs, found:

  • Amputation rates in California were 10 times higher in the poorest neighborhoods -- such as Compton and East Los Angeles -- than in the richest neighborhoods -- such as Malibu and Beverly Hills;
  • In some cases, rich and poor neighborhoods abutted each other and the statistical differences remained;
  • Less than 6% of diabetic Californians are black, yet blacks accounted for nearly 13% of the diabetic patient population undergoing one or more amputations in 2009; and
  • Amputation patients were most likely to be black or non–English speaking, male and older than 65.  Read More