The prevalence of lower-extremity arterial occlusive disease (LEAOD), the progression of LEAOD, and the incidence of new LEAOD were determined by noninvasive method in 410 volunteers between the ages of 50 and 70 yr; 252 individuals had type II (non-insulindependent) diabetes, 158 were control subjects. LEAOD was monitored with the ankle/arm systolic blood pressure index in combination with Doppler arterial velocity waveform analysis. LEAODwas much more prevalent in the type II patients (22%, 55 of 252) than in thecontrol subjects (3%, 4 of 158) (P > .00001). The prevalence of risk factors for LEAOD was much higher in the type II patients, including elevated triglyceride, depressed high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol, hypertension, smoking, and elevated systolic blood pressure. In type II diabetic patients the incidence of new LEAOD over a 2-yr period (14%, 28 of 197) was lower than the incidence of LEAOD progression (87%, 45 of 52). Type II patients with LEAOD also had a high incidence of mortality (22%, 12 of 55) compared with those without LEAOD (4%, 8 of 197) (P < .0005). A risk score including smoking history, duration of diabetes, depressed HDL cholesterol, total cholesterol, elevated systolic blood pressure, and low obesity index is related to LEAOD. After accounting for the effect of all of the risk factors, we suggest that type II diabetes contributes additional risk for LEAOD.

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