CDC Study Finds Major Drop in Health Risks Among Diabetics

New research is giving hope to the diabetic community that some of the more serious complications associated with diabetes appear to be on the decline. These include heart attack, stroke, kidney failure, and amputations.

Researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention measured health risks from both type 1 and type 2 diabetes, finding an approximate drop of 60 percent in heart attacks and deaths linked to high blood sugar between 1990 and 2010.

They analyzed data from hundreds of thousands of diabetics who suffered stroke, heart attack, or otherwise died from high blood sugar.

"We have to find a way to replicate these successes," said study lead author Dr. Edward Gregg, who seemed to want to make sure the good news was tempered with a dose of reality. "[We need] to transfer that knowledge into preventing the disease to begin with."

"This is the first really credible, reliable data that demonstrate that all of the efforts at reducing risk have paid off," said David M. Nathan, who heads up the Diabetes Center at Mass General Hospital, and who was not involved in the study. "Given that diabetes is the chronic epidemic of this millennium, this is a very important finding."

Their findings were reported in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Photo: Consumer Affairs