New Study want to prove the link between Type 2 Diabetes and Dementia


Diabetes is a great risk to your health and we need to understand more about it to be able to control it better. Type 2 diabetes is connected to dementia and a large Australian Study Group want to focus on it.

Dementia is not a specific disease. It’s an overall term that describes a wide range of symptoms 

In Australia, more than 300 people are discovered daily having diabetes. The chronic condition is known for being the leading causes of kidney failure, lower limb amputations and preventable blindness.

But, that is not all as new complications are emerging and it is really scary.  We don’t have a clue why, but this is the truth, says Victorian diabetes expert Professor Jonathan Shaw.

“We’re seeing cognitive impairment, people progressing towards dementia, we’re seeing physical disability and with an ageing population these are two of the things that people fear the most; the loss of independence,” Prof Shaw said.

“Both of those are related to diabetes but how that works, how many people get it, who’s going to get it are all things we don’t know enough about.”

The professor also noted that Australian has a higher risk of dying at heart failure than as opposed to heart attacks.

20 years ago, hospitals are full of full people with diabetes.  Knowing a little more about diabetes, having heart attacks and strokes, we are now better at preventing that and at treating it.

“But what we are seeing is people short of breath having difficulty moving about because of heart failure, in fact heart failure is worse in terms of its outlook than many cancers,” Prof Shaw told AAP.

To investigate why this is, researchers at La Trobe University and Baker Heart and Diabetes Institute will recruit 1500 adults across Victoria to advance understanding of the progression of diabetic complications in people with type 2 diabetes.

The participants would be tested for a lot of things such as cognitive, psychological, behavioral and physical functions. Blood tests using cutting-edge technology and physical examinations will also be conducted.

Doctors are going to follow the patients’ life for 5 to 10 years. During such time, they would get their regular medication.

“Having diabetes means the individual has to put a lot of effort into managing themselves and people obviously find that a significant challenge and some people do it better than others, some of those aspects are likely to be very important in the development of complications but you can’t really measure that in a test tube,” Prof Shaw said.

“We have other studies that indicate that lots of people, probably the majority don’t take all of the medications they’re prescribed,” he noted.

La Trobe public health expert Professor Rachel Huxley says it’s critical to be able to predict the risk of complications in people with type 2 diabetes.

“Predicting risk will help clinicians to improve patients’ quality of life and will inform future prevention and treatment strategies,” said Prof Huxley.

Sources: SBS News, Alzheimer’s Association