Acta Diabetologica

, Volume 56, Issue 5, pp 561–567 | Cite as

Gender difference in the risk for cardiovascular events or mortality of patients with diabetic foot syndrome

  • Giuseppe SeghieriEmail author
  • Laura Policardo
  • Elisa Gualdani
  • Roberto Anichini
  • Paolo Francesconi
Original Article



Diabetic foot syndrome (DFS) increases the risk for atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD), chronic kidney disease (CKD), or mortality. The present study aims at ascertaining whether such DFS-related excess risk differs between genders, retrospectively investigating a population with diabetes from Tuscany, Italy, followed-up for 6 years (2011–2016).


People with diabetes living in Tuscany on January 1st 2011 identified by administrative databases, were divided by baseline history of prior DFS hospitalizations, stratified by presence/absence of peripheral vascular disease and evaluating, by Cox regression analysis, whether adjusted DFS-related excess risk of incident ASCVD, CKD or mortality differed between genders.


In an overall population of 165,650 subjects with diabetes (81,829M/83,821F), basal prevalence of DFS was twice higher among males, who were moreover at a significantly greater risk of all considered outcomes along the 6-year period. On the contrary, baseline DFS significantly increased the hospitalization risk for ASCVD, CKD and mortality equally or at a slightly greater extent in females, while the risk for stroke was significantly associated with DFS only among females (HR: 1.622 (1.314–1.980); p = 0.0001 vs. HR: 1.132 (0.955–1.332); p = NS). This finding was even reinforced in non-vascular DFS, which was associated with a significant raised risk for stroke, heart failure or mortality exclusively in females.


In this population, DFS prevalence and overall risk for ASCVD, CKD or mortality were significantly higher among males. Baseline co-presence of DFS, however, conferred a similar adjusted risk for all these outcomes between genders, and in case of non-vascular DFS the risk was significantly increased only among females.


Diabetic foot syndrome Gender Cardiovascular diseases Chronic kidney disease Mortality 


Author contributions

No potential conflicts of interest relevant to this article were reported. GS researched/analysed data and wrote the manuscript. He is moreover the guarantor of this work and, as such, had full access to all the data in the study and takes responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis; LP and EG researched data and reviewed the manuscript; PF and RA researched data and reviewed the manuscript.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that there is no conflict of interest that could be perceived as prejudicing the impartiality of the research reported.

Statement of human and animal rights

All procedures followed were in accordance with the ethical standards of the responsible committee on human experimentation (institutional and national) and with the Helsinki Declaration of 1975, as revised in 2008.

Statement of informed consent

Each patient was assigned a unique identifier that was the same for all administrative databases. This identifier does not allow to disclose the patient’s identity and other sensitive data and therefore no informed consent was required from all patients for being included in the study.


Giuseppe Seghieri.

Supplementary material

592_2019_1292_MOESM1_ESM.docx (13 kb)
Supplementary material 1 (DOCX 12 KB)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Italia S.r.l., part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Giuseppe Seghieri
    • 1
    Email author
  • Laura Policardo
    • 1
  • Elisa Gualdani
    • 1
  • Roberto Anichini
    • 2
  • Paolo Francesconi
    • 1
  1. 1.Epidemiology UnitAgenzia Regionale Sanità ToscanaFlorenceItaly
  2. 2.Diabetes UnitOspedale S. JacopoPistoiaItaly

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