Background Venous thromboembolism (VTE) remains a clinically significant complication after trauma even though screening and prophylaxis strategies for at-risk patients have substantially reduced incidence. Our study sought to determine if diabetes, a condition that promotes thrombi formation, is associated with developing a VTE in trauma patients.
Methods The registries of 2 level I and a level II trauma centers were retrospectively reviewed for consecutively admitted trauma patients over a 6-year period. Demographics, VTE risk factors, injury characteristics, and VTE incidence were univariately compared between patients with insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM), non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM), and no diabetes. Stepwise logistic regression was performed to identify independent predictors of VTE; results were further stratified by age (<65 and ≥65 years) and presented as adjusted ORs (AOR).
Results Of the 26 934 total patients, 779 (2.9%) had IDDM, 2052 (7.6%) had NIDDM, and the remaining 89.5% were without diabetes. VTE incidence was 3.6%, 2.4%, and 2.2%, in IDDM, NIDDM, and non-diabetes, respectively (p=0.02). After adjustment for established and significant risk factors, neither IDDM (AOR=1.43, 95% CI 0.95 to 2.15, p=0.09) nor NIDDM (AOR=1.03, 95% CI 0.75 to 1.40, p=0.88) was associated with increased odds of developing a VTE. Patients ≥65 years developed VTE more frequently than those <65 years (2.5% vs 2.1%, p=0.04). Among patients <65 years, IDDM was significantly predictive of VTE (AOR=1.86, 95% CI 1.01–3.41, p=0.045), but NIDDM was not. For patients ≥65 years, neither type of diabetes was predictive of VTE.
Conclusions VTE incidence was ∼2 times higher among injured patients <65 years with IDDM versus no diabetes. Overall, we did not find an increased risk of VTE in patients with any diabetes. Additional studies are needed before a recommendation on VTE screening or prophylaxis in IDDM can be made.
Level of evidence Level III, therapeutic/care management.
- diabetes mellitus
- Venous thromboembolism
- trauma/ critical care
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