Factors Associated With Lack of Diabetes Disease Awareness Identified

A study found approximately one-third of people with diabetes were undiagnosed or unaware of the diagnosis.
A study found approximately one-third of people with diabetes were undiagnosed or unaware of the diagnosis.

HealthDay News — Factors that are associated with being unaware of diabetes include not receiving health care in the past year, while a family history of diabetes and hospitalizations in the past year are factors associated with increased awareness, according to a study published in Diabetes Care.

Andy Menke, PhD, from Social & Scientific Systems in Silver Spring, Md., and colleagues examined factors associated with being unaware of having diabetes. Data were obtained from 1,879 participants with diagnosed or undiagnosed diabetes from the 2011 to 2014 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.

The researchers found that 34.3% of participants were unaware of their diabetes. In unadjusted models, participants aged 45 to 64 years had 34% lower odds of being unaware of their diabetes compared with those aged 20 to 44 years. 

Non-Hispanic Asians and Hispanics of non-Mexican-American descent had 75% and 69% higher odds, respectively, of being unaware. 

Family history of diabetes, past year hospitalizations, hypertension, health insurance, routine place for health care, and health care in the past year correlated with awareness. Individuals with a family history of diabetes had about half the odds of being unaware after adjustment. 

In addition, those who did not receive health care in the past year and people who were hospitalized in the past year had 6-fold higher and one-third lower odds of being unaware, respectively.

"Overall, approximately one-third of people with diabetes were undiagnosed/unaware of it," the authors write.

Reference

Menke A, Casagrande S, Avilés-santa ML, Cowie CC. Factors associated with being unaware of having diabetes. [published online March 13, 2017] Diabetes Care. doi: 10.2337/dc16-2626

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