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Recent Decline Seen in Diabetes Control Among U.S. Adults

THURSDAY, June 10, 2021 -- For adults in the United States, there was improvement in diabetes control from 1999 to the early 2010s, which subsequently stalled and declined, according to a study published in the June 10 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

Michael Fang, Ph.D., from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore, and colleagues examined trends in diabetes treatment and risk factor control using data from adults with diabetes from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) from 1999 through 2018.

The researchers found that from 1999 to the early 2010s, there was improvement in diabetes control among participants, which subsequently stalled and declined. The percentage of adults with diabetes in whom glycemic control was achieved (glycated hemoglobin <7 percent) decreased from 57.4 percent in the 2007 to 2010 period to 50.5 percent in the 2015 to 2018 period. Following major improvement in lipid control (non-high-density lipoprotein cholesterol level <130 mg/dL) in the early 2000s, there was minimal improvement from 2007-2010 to 2015-2018 (52.3 to 55.7 percent). The percentage of participants with blood pressure control (<140/90 mm Hg) decreased from 74.2 percent in 2011 to 2014 to 70.4 percent in 2015 to 2018. After 2010, the percentage of participants in whom all three targets were simultaneously achieved plateaued, reaching 22.2 percent in 2015 to 2018.

"After large improvements from 1999 to 2010, diabetes control stalled and worsened in the United States," the authors write.

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