10 Per Cent Of Tamil Nadu Population Affected By Diabetes

Tue, 14 Dec 2010
One in every ten people in the Indian state of Tamil Nadu suffers from diabetes, according to a new nationwide study on the prevalence of type 2 diabetes mellitus and hypertension .

The first phase of the Indian Council of Medical Research’s INDIAB (India-diabetes) study found that Tamil Nadu has the highest number of diabetics in the country, with 9.8 per cent of the state’s population (42 lakh people) living with the disease. It also showed that 30 lakh people in the state are at high-risk of developing diabetes .

The research also found that abdominal obesity in the Tamil Nadu was as high as 22.4 per cent in males and 35.3 per cent in females. In addition, it revealed that 27.8 per cent of the population have hypertension ( high blood pressure ) and 20.1 per cent have high cholesterol - all risk factors of diabetes .

Around 1,200 people aged 20 and above from urban areas and 2,800 from the state’s rural areas took part in the survey.

Dr R M Anjana, the diabetologist who headed the research team at the Madras Diabetes Research Foundation, said: "The prevalence of diabetes in urban and rural Tamil Nadu is 13.5 per cent and 6.9 per cent respectively."

"The overall prevalence of diabetes in the state works out to be 9.8 per cent, which when extrapolated to the total population of Tamil Nadu, means that over 4.2 million people have diabetes ."

"It is important for us to help prevent the incidence of diabetes," Dr Anjana added. "At the same time, it is also important that we deliver quality healthcare to people diagnosed with the disorder."

ICMR Assistant Director General Dr Tanvir Kaur said the INDIAB study would be conducted in all the states, with the second phase covering all north-eastern regions of India .

She added that it was the first time since 1972 that the ICMR had under taken "such a big study" on the prevalence of diabetes .