WIfI score found to be accurate across racial groups

Melissa D’Andrea

The wound, ischemia and foot infection (WIfI) score is as accurate a predictor of risk for limb loss in Black people as it is among whites, an SVS Foundation-supported study found.

The research on patients with chronic limb-threatening ischemia (CLTI) was carried out by Melissa D’Andrea, BA, a fourth-year medical student from Loyola University Chicago Stritch School of Medicine in Maywood, Illinois, et al, led by Bernadette Aulivola, Loyola’s director of the division of vascular surgery and endovascular therapy.

The results were presented at the Midwestern Vascular Surgical Society virtual annual meeting (Sept. 9–12).

A total of 2,630 limbs in 2,543 patients with CLTI were analyzed, with 404 limbs (15.8%) undergoing major amputation.

Increased odds of amputation were related to a more advanced WIfI score at initial presentation amongst Blacks (odd ratio [OR] 1.34, 95% confidence interval [CI] 1.10–1.63; p<0.003), D’Andrea noted.

“The odds of more advanced WIfI stage was 1.3 times higher for Black patients as compared to white patients,” she said. D’Andrea and colleagues concluded: “Higher amputation rates amongst blacks with CLTI may be attributable to more advanced disease severity at time of initial presentation.

“In order to reduce disparities in [peripheral arterial disease] outcomes, targeted efforts at improved screening, early diagnosis and expeditious referral to a vascular specialist should be implemented in vulnerable racial populations.”

The research was supported by the SVS Foundation Student Research Fellowship award.

Vascular Specialist explored healthcare disparities in-depth in a series of news articles covering new science and profiles of key vascular leaders last year. During SVS ONLINE in the summer, researchers in Texas found disparities in those undergoing early carotid revascularization along gender, race and ethnic lines.


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