To identify the increase in diabetes-related amputations in California, inewsource analyzed data from the California Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development, the agency that collects information about the care provided to patients discharged from California hospitals.

The data, compiled at the request of inewsource, includes more than 100 separate billing codes, by body part and procedure, detailing patients treated within hospitals across the state. The data represents the number of amputation procedures, not the number of patients treated.

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Explore the rate of amputations in California.

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Because the number of diabetes patients is unknown at the state or county level, inewsource calculated the rate of occurrence for diabetes-related amputations as the number of amputations per 100,000 residents, by county and year. That calculation used population estimates from the California Department of Finance to account for population growth over time.

By calculating amputations as a rate of occurrence within the state’s overall population, by county and year, inewsource was able to compare and rank counties across California. Some counties had fewer than 11 diabetes-related amputations and were redacted for privacy concerns, so inewsource removed those from the statewide analysis.

In addition, inewsource removed counties that reported fewer than 20 diabetes-related amputations in either 2010 or 2016 because numbers that small are considered unreliable.

More in the series …

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[two_third_last]Medicare to pay $450 to help seniors lose weight, avoid diabetes
June 29, 2017
Some 86 million Americans live with prediabetes, which can progress to diabetes, a costly and debilitating disease. A new program can help people lose weight, a proven way to reduce the risk of getting the disease.[/two_third_last]

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[two_third_last]Spending on diabetes drugs is ‘skyrocketing’
July 5, 2017
The largesse of a the drug industry related to diabetes is skyrocketing by any measure: dollar cost per unit, the number of people purchasing them and the number of prescriptions sold.[/two_third_last]

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[two_third_last]Medicare boosts incentives to promote weight loss, prevent diabetes
July 17, 2017
Participating providers — from hospital systems and physician groups to wellness centers, supermarket chains and even churches — could receive up to $785 for each participant who loses 5 percent of their body weight.[/two_third_last]

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[two_third_last]Doctors debate danger of popular diabetes drug after FDA amputation warning
August 31, 2017
Many San Diego doctors are taking their patients off of Invokana, a widely used diabetes drug, after a large industry-sponsored trial found it doubled the risk of lower limb amputations compared with those taking a placebo.[/two_third_last]

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[two_third_last]Diabetes-related amputations up significantly in California — and San Diego
Sept. 20, 2017
Clinicians are amputating more toes, legs, ankles and feet of patients with diabetes in California — and San Diego County in particular — in a “shocking” trend that has mystified diabetes experts here and across the country.[/two_third_last]

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[two_third_last]Diabetes-related amputations: How we crunched the data
Sept. 20, 2017
To identify the increase in diabetes-related amputations in California, inewsource analyzed data from the California Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development, the agency that collects information about the care provided to patients discharged from California hospitals.[/two_third_last]

Brandon Quester was the director of data and visuals at inewsource. To contact inewsource with tips, suggestions or corrections, please email contact [at] inewsource [dot] org.