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Diabetes control linked to post-surgical wound complication risk

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The risk of complications in diabetes patients undergoing wound surgery is affected by how well blood glucose levels are controlled, according to US researchers

The study authors, from from Georgetown University, emphasised the need for “tight” HbA1c control in such patients.

They recorded complications – including dehiscence, infections and need for repeat surgery – in 79 diabetes patients undergoing procedures for chronic wound closure.

Those with high HbA1c levels before or after surgery showed a higher risk of complications – for example, wound dehiscence occurred in 44% of those with high HbA1c before surgery, compared to 19% of other patients.

The authors said: “In primary closure of surgical wounds in high-risk patients, poor glycemic control is significantly associated with worse outcomes.

“Every effort should be made to ensure tight control in both the chronic and subacute perioperative periods.”

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Readers' comments (1)

  • Evidence is clear - the tighter the control of HbA1c pre-operative leads to far more optimal outcomes for wound management post operatively. <7% or 53mmol/mol is the gold standard. Emergency procedures aside if surgeons considered preoperative DM management plans, length of stays can be reduced if wound dehiscence and/or delayed healing is avoided.

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