Monday, March 21, 2011

Diabetes "Hotspots" in the US

An interesting study has identified 10 states as being hotspots for type 2 diabetes. They are:

  1. California:  6.6 million people with diabetes;
  2. Texas:  5.5 million;
  3. Florida: 4.2 million;
  4. New York:  2.9 million;
  5. Ohio:  2.1 million;
  6. Illinois: 2 million;
  7. Georgia: 2 million;
  8. Pennsylvania: 1.9 million;
  9. North Carolina: 1.9 million; and
  10. Michigan: 1.6 million.

The sad and frustrating thing for healthcare professionals is that many cases of type 2 diabetes are preventable. Unlike type 1 diabetes, which often, but not always, begins in childhood, type 2 diabetes can result from being overweight and inactive.

According to the CDC, type 2 diabetes (previously called adult-onset or non-insulin dependent diabetes) accounts for 90% to 95% of all diagnosed cases of diabetes. Let me repeat that: 90% to 95% of all diagnosed cases.

The American Diabetes Association reports: In 2007, diabetes was listed as the underlying cause on 71,382 death certificates and was listed as a contributing factor on an additional 160,022 death certificates. This means that diabetes contributed to a total of 231,404 deaths.

Diabetes is more than just a disease that affects your blood sugar. High blood sugar levels affect your whole body drastically. Having diabetes increases your risk of developing heart disease, nerve pain (particularly in your feet) and inability to fight infection. Having diabetes can lead to an often fatal illness called sepsis. Diabetes can cause kidney disease, too.

The cost of diabetes is enormous. From the financial aspect of dealing with the supplies to manage the disease, to the lost days of work. Diabetes affects the community as a whole.

Are you at risk for diabetes? Take the ADA Risk Test to find out.