OBJECTIVE: To estimate the lifetime health and economic effects of optimal prevention and treatment of the diabetic foot according to international standards and to determine the cost-effectiveness of these interventions in the Netherlands. RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS: A risk-based Markov model was developed to simulate the onset and progression of diabetic foot disease in patients with newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes managed with care according to guidelines for their lifetime. Mean survival time, quality of life, foot complications, and costs were the outcome measures assessed. Current care was the reference comparison. Data from Dutch studies on the epidemiology of diabetic foot disease, health care use, and costs, complemented with information from international studies, were used to feed the model. RESULTS: Compared with current care, guideline-based care resulted in improved life expectancy, gain of quality-adjusted life-years (QALYs), and reduced incidence of foot complications. The lifetime costs of management of the diabetic foot following guideline-based care resulted in a cost per QALY gained of < 25,000 US dollars, even for levels of preventive foot care as low as 10%. The cost-effectiveness varied sharply, depending on the level of foot ulcer reduction attained. CONCLUSIONS: Management of the diabetic foot according to guideline-based care improves survival, reduces diabetic foot complications, and is cost-effective and even cost saving compared with standard care.

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Diabetes Care
Erasmus MC: University Medical Center Rotterdam

Ortegon, M., Redekop, K., & Niessen, L. W. (2004). Cost-effectiveness of prevention and treatment of the diabetic foot: a Markov analysis. Diabetes Care. Retrieved from http://hdl.handle.net/1765/10328