(1) Having psoriasis may double your risk for metabolic syndrome - a recent observational study found that metabolic syndrome was twice as likely to occur in patients that have psoriasis, when compared to patients who do not have this debilitating skin condition. So of the 6.6 million adults, ages 20 - 59 in the US currently diagnosed with psoriasis, 2.7 million have metabolic syndrome - which is one million more persons than would be expected to have the syndrome who don't have psoriasis. This now makes sense to researchers because patients with serious psoriasis had already in past studies been noted to be at higher risk of heart attacks, stroke, and cardiovascular mortality (death associated with heart disease) and an earlier mortality risk of 3 to 4 years. When this study looked at specific numbers, prevalence of metabolic syndrome was 40% among psoriasis sufferers, compared to 23% prevalence among patients without psoriasis. Metabolic syndrome is a cluster of risk factors that occur together and increase risk of having coronary artery disease, stroke and diabetes type 2. In the psoriasis patients, the most common aspects of metabolic syndrome noted were central obesity, hypertriglyceridemia, and low HDL levels.
(2) In the US as many as 27% of people with diabetes go undiagnosed - The CDC recently released new diabetes statistics that identify 26 million diagnosed diabetics and 79 million patients with pre-diabetes. Specifically 11.3% of people ages 20 years or older have diabetes. More than 35% of people ages 20 or older have pre-diabetes. The CDC currently suspects that nearly 7 million people remain undiagnosed though they have clinical diabetes. The American Diabetes Association has been recommending that all health professionals take the opportunity when they see a patient - regardless of the presenting health complaint - to assess for diabetes risk or prevalence. That means asking about family history of the disease, taking a waist and weight measurement, determining if they are part of a high risk group, checking for high blood pressure or dyslipidemia and deciding if a fasting blood sugar or Hemoglobin A1c test, which measure blood sugar averages over 3 months, is appropriate. The take-away message to health professionals is to not lose an opportunity to screen for diabetes when a patient presents for evaluation or treatment of any health condition.
Published On: April 26, 2011