Well-Controlled HbA1c in Diabetes Linked to Lower Dementia Risk

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Well-Controlled HbA1c in Diabetes Linked to Lower Dementia Risk
Well-Controlled HbA1c in Diabetes Linked to Lower Dementia Risk

HealthDay News — Tighter blood glucose control may have a protective effect against dementia in patients with type 2 diabetes, according to new research presented at the annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes in Stockholm, Sweden.

The study included almost 350,000 people with type 2 diabetes. They were all registered in the Swedish National Diabetes Registry between January 2004 and December 2012. They had no history of dementia when they were diagnosed with type 2 diabetes. The mean age was 67 years when the study began. Study participants were tracked until the study ended in 2012 or they were hospitalized for dementia or died.

Using a computer model, the researchers calculated the link between average blood glucose levels (via HbA1c levels) and dementia. Slightly more than 3% of those in the study — 11,035 people — were admitted to the hospital with dementia during the nearly five-year follow-up period. After taking other variables into account, the researchers found that those with HbA1c levels of 10.5% or higher were 50% more likely to be diagnosed with dementia than were people with HbA1c levels of 6.5% or less. Those who'd had a previous stroke were 40% more likely to develop dementia versus those who had not had a stroke.

"The positive association between HbA1c and risk of dementia in fairly young patients with type 2 diabetes indicates a potential for prevention of dementia with improved blood sugar control," wrote study author Aidin Rawshani, from the National Diabetes Register and Institute of Medicine in Gothenburg, Sweden, and colleagues.

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