Diabetes in TB Patients is a Risk Factor, Says Study

With November being the Diabetes awareness month, it is time for you to be aware about risk factor associated with this disease. As per the recent findings, around 44 percent of TB patients in Kerala have been diagnosed with diabetes mellitus. These new findings regarding the TB patients suffering from diabetes were published in the October edition of PLoS One journal. The study was conducted as a part of the ‘TB Operations Research Training Project’.

Following the detection of diabetes among the TB patients in Kerala, a pilot project for bi-directional screening at 120 places in India has been initiated. The major concern is that patients reported with diabetes mellitus have carelessly controlled it. Though it has proven that the pervasiveness of diabetes mellitus along with tuberculosis is dangerous, its existing rate among TB patients in India is unknown.

As per the statistics of 2010, around 25,000 patients were detected with tuberculosis and cured through 73 TB reporting units throughout a state. Similarly a statewide representative sample of TB patients in Kerala was diagnosed for DM last year in July. The sample of TB patients diagnosed constitute of 552 people, out of which 243 were found to have DM, 128 were previously suffering from DM and 115 were newly detected. Male patients were found to have more prevalence.

In 2010, the total estimated prevalence of diabetes in India was 51 million and it is anticipated to increase up to 70 million by 2025. Around 15 percent of pulmonary tuberculosis cases in India are more likely to be attributable to diabetes mellitus. The findings in Kerala shows that non-drug resistant TB patients with DM mostly fails to respond to first-line tuberculosis treatments. Therefore, early stage detection of diabetes in TB patients will lead to positive outcomes of treatment. Tuberculosis patients having DM are prone to early death and a better diabetes control can only reduce the risk.

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