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Health & Medicine for Senior Citizens

Heart Disease, Stroke Deaths Drop for People with Diabetes: Often Seniors

Healthier lifestyles, better disease management are helping people live longer; Among U.S. seniors 65 and older, 10.9 million, or 26.9% had diabetes in 2010.

May 23, 2012 - Death rates for people with diabetes dropped substantially from 1997 to 2006, especially deaths related to heart disease and stroke, according to researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Institutes of Health. It is encouraging news for senior citizens, the most common victims of type 2 diabetes.

Deaths from all causes declined by 23 percent, and deaths related to heart disease and stroke dropped by 40 percent, according to the study published yesterday in the journal Diabetes Care.

Scientists evaluated 1997-2004 National Health Interview Survey data from nearly 250,000 adults who were linked to the National Death Index. Although adults with diabetes still are more likely to die younger than those who do not have the disease, the gap is narrowing.

 

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Older Adults with Diabetes Live Long Enough to Benefit from Interventions

‘…with the exception of patients over age 76 with the poorest health status, all showed strong survival rates’ - U-M study - May 2, 2012

Lifestyle Changes Reduced Type 2 Diabetes Risk 58%; Highly Effective for Seniors

Over 10 years, the lifestyle and metformin interventions resulted in health benefits and reduced the costs of inpatient and outpatient care and prescriptions…

March 22, 2012

Diabetes Drug TAX-875 Improves Glucose Control Without Increasing Hypoglycemia

Researchers say it is as effective as glimepiride with lower risk of drop in blood sugar - good news for about 11 million seniors with type 2 diabetes

Feb. 27, 2012

Older Women with Diabetes Have Greater Hearing Loss as They Age

Men lose even more hearing regardless of diabetes or age; women lose less if diabetes controlled

Jan. 26, 2012

Statins of Any Kind May Increase Risk of Diabetes in Postmenopausal Women

Researchers say current recommendations by diabetes association nor statin guidelines should change - Jan. 10, 2012

Diabetes Drugs, Blood Thinners Cause 2/3 of Senior Citizen Adverse Events, Hospitalizations

Almost half of cases are in elderly aged 80 plus; overdoses, stronger than expected effect most common causes - Nov. 26, 2011

Raising 'Good' Cholesterol Reduces Heart Attack, Stroke Risk in Diabetes Patients

And, risks of heart attack and stroke increase when 'good' cholesterol levels go down - Oct. 7, 2011

Dieting Beats Exercise for Diabetes Prevention in Older Women, Combo Is Best

Strengthening exercise appears to have greater benefits for insulin resistance than aerobic exercise - Sept. 2, 2011

Older Diabetes Patients with Very Low Glucose Have Slightly Higher Risk of Death

Well controlled blood sugar level lowers risk of heart attack, amputation, kidney disease - April 18, 2011

Senior Citizens Lead the Way as Diabetes Spreads to 26 Million in New U.S. Estimate

Estimates in U.S. have risen since CDC estimated in 2008 that 23.6 million (7.8) had diabetes and 57 million adults had prediabetes - Jan. 27, 2011

Older Women with Diabetes and Depression Have Twice the Risk of Death

Both problems linked to unhealthy behaviors such as smoking, poor diet and a sedentary lifestyle - Jan. 3, 2011


 
 

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Improved medical treatment for cardiovascular disease, better management of diabetes, and some healthy lifestyle changes contributed to the decline. People with diabetes were less likely to smoke and more likely to be physically active than in the past. Better control of high blood pressure and high cholesterol also may have contributed to improved health. However, obesity levels among people with diabetes continued to increase.

“Taking care of your heart through healthy lifestyle choices is making a difference, but Americans continue to die from a disease that can be prevented,” said Ann Albright, Ph.D., R.D., director of CDC’s Division of Diabetes Translation.

“Although the cardiovascular disease death rate for people with diabetes has dropped, it is still twice as high as for adults without diabetes.”

Previous studies have found that rates of heart disease and stroke are declining for all U.S. adults. Those rates are dropping faster for people with diabetes compared to adults without diabetes. Recent CDC studies also have found declining rates of kidney failure, amputation of feet and legs, and hospitalization for heart disease and stroke among people with diabetes.

People getting diabetes still climbing

Because people with diabetes are living longer and the rate of new cases being diagnosed is increasing, scientists expect the total number of people with the disease will continue to rise. The number of Americans diagnosed with diabetes has more than tripled since 1980, primarily due to type 2 diabetes, which is closely linked to a rise in obesity, inactivity and older age.

CDC estimates that 25.8 million Americans have diabetes, and 7 million of them do not know they have the disease.

CDC and its partners are working on a variety of initiatives to prevent type 2 diabetes and to reduce its complications. CDC leads the National Diabetes Prevention Program, a public-private partnership designed to bring evidence-based programs for preventing type 2 diabetes to communities. The program supports establishing a network of lifestyle-change classes for overweight or obese people at high risk of developing type 2 diabetes.

“Diabetes carries significant personal and financial costs for individuals, their families, and the health care systems that treat them,” said Edward W. Gregg, Ph.D., the study’s lead author and chief of epidemiology and statistics in CDC’s Division of Diabetes Translation.

“As the number of people with diabetes increases, it will be more important than ever to manage the disease to reduce complications and premature deaths.”

Controlling levels of blood sugar (glucose), cholesterol and blood pressure helps people with diabetes reduce the chance of developing serious complications, including heart disease, stroke, blindness and kidney disease.

In 2001, the National Diabetes Education Program (NDEP), a joint effort of CDC and NIH with the support of more than 200 partners, developed a campaign to raise awareness of the link between diabetes and heart disease and reinforce the importance of a comprehensive diabetes care plan that focuses on the ABCs of diabetes – A1C (a measure of blood glucose control over a two- to three-month period), Blood pressure and Cholesterol.

For more information, visit www.YourDiabetesInfo.org or call toll-free 1-888-693-NDEP (1-888-693-6337).

Million Hearts Campaign

Archive Story

Medicare Adds Free Annual Cardiovascular Discussion with Health Care Provider

Part of joint Million Heart initiative with CDC; Senior citizens and others get Medicare help in fighting number one killer

Nov. 9, 2011

Last year CDC and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services launched Million Hearts, an initiative to prevent 1 million heart attacks and strokes over the next five years. The initiative focuses on two main goals: empowering Americans to make healthy choices and improving care for people, focusing on aspirin for people at risk, blood pressure control, cholesterol management and smoking cessation.

More than 2 million heart attacks and strokes occur every year, and treatment for these conditions and other vascular diseases account for about 1 of every 6 health care dollars. Up to 20 percent of deaths from heart attack and 13 percent of deaths from stroke are attributable to diabetes or prediabetes. For more information on Million Hearts, visit http://millionhearts.hhs.gov.

Diabetes was the seventh leading cause of death in 2009 and is the leading cause of new cases of kidney failure, blindness among adults younger than 75, and amputation of feet and legs not related to injury.

People with diagnosed diabetes have medical costs that are more than twice as high as for people without the disease. The total costs of diabetes are an estimated $174 billion annually, including $116 billion in direct medical costs.

For information about diabetes visit www.cdc.gov/diabetes or the National Diabetes Education Program at www.yourdiabetesinfo.org.


About Type 2 Diabetes and Older People

By NIH: National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases

Diabetes means your blood glucose, or blood sugar, is too high. With Type 2 diabetes, the more common type, your body does not make or use insulin well. Insulin is a hormone that helps glucose get into your cells to give them energy. Without insulin, too much glucose stays in your blood. Over time, high blood glucose can lead to serious problems with your heart, eyes, kidneys, nerves, gums and teeth.

You have a higher risk of type 2 diabetes if you are older, obese, have a family history of diabetes, or do not exercise.

The symptoms of type 2 diabetes appear slowly. Some people do not notice symptoms at all. The symptoms can include

   ● Being very thirsty

   ● Urinating often

   ● Feeling very hungry or tired

   ● Losing weight without trying

   ● Having sores that heal slowly

   ● Having blurry eyesight

A blood test can show if you have diabetes. Many people can manage their diabetes through healthy eating, physical activity, and blood glucose testing. Some people also need to take diabetes medicines.

Should I be tested for diabetes?

Anyone 45 years old or older should consider getting tested for diabetes. If you are 45 or older and overweight-see the BMI chart -getting tested is strongly recommended. If you are younger than 45, overweight, and have one or more of the risk factors, you should consider getting tested. Ask your doctor for a fasting blood glucose test or an oral glucose tolerance test. Your doctor will tell you if you have normal blood glucose, prediabetes, or diabetes.

   ● Among U.S. residents ages 65 years and older, 10.9 million, or 26.9 percent, had diabetes in 2010.

   ● Diabetes affects 25.8 million people of all ages - 8.3 percent of the U.S. population
       > DIAGNOSED - 18.8 million people
       ●> UNDIAGNOSED - 7.0 million people

   ● About 215,000 people younger than 20 years had diabetes—type 1 or type 2—in the United States in 2010.

   ● About 1.9 million people ages 20 years or older were newly diagnosed with diabetes in 2010 in the United States.

   ● In 2005–2008, based on fasting glucose or hemoglobin A1C (A1C) levels, 35 percent of U.S. adults ages 20 years or older had prediabetes - 50 percent of adults ages 65 years or older. Applying this percentage to the entire U.S. population in 2010 yields an estimated 79 million American adults ages 20 years or older with prediabetes.

   ● Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure, nontraumatic lower-limb amputations, and new cases of blindness among adults in the United States.

   ● Diabetes is a major cause of heart disease and stroke.

   ● Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death in the United States.

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