Obesity, Inactivity and Smoking Predict Disability in Diabetes

MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Marianna Virtanen PhD Finnish Institute of Occupational Health, Helsinki, Turku and Tampere, FinlandMedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Marianna Virtanen PhD
Finnish Institute of Occupational Health,
Helsinki, Turku and Tampere, Finland

Medical Research: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Dr. Virtanen: Diabetes is a common chronic condition among working-aged populations but few studies have investigated work disability associated with diabetes. In this study, we examined trajectories of register-based work disability days over a 5-year period and lifestyle-related factors predicting these trajectories.

Five trajectories described work disability: ‘no/very low disability’ (41.1% among diabetes cases, 48.0% among controls); ‘low–steady’ (35.4%, 34.7%); ‘high–steady’ (13.6%, 12.1%); and two ‘high–increasing’ trajectories (10.0%, 5.2%). Diabetes was associated with ending up to the ’high-increasing disability trajectory’, however, this affected only 10% of the population with diabetes. Obesity and physical inactivity predicted an adverse trajectory similarly among people with diabetes and those without diabetes while smoking was a stronger risk factor for an adverse trajectory in diabetes.


Medical Research: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?

Dr. Virtanen: The majority of employees with diabetes have relatively low disability rates although 10% are on a high and increasing disability trajectory. Lifestyle-related risk factors have similar associations with disability among employees with and without diabetes, except smoking which is more strongly associated with poorer prognosis in diabetes.

Medical Research: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Dr. Virtanen: Future research is needed to examine which types of interventions help in preventing work disability in diabetes.

Citation:

Lifestyle-related risk factors and trajectories of work disability over 5 years in employees with diabetes: findings from two prospective cohort studies

Virtanen, M. Kivimäki, M. Zins, R. Dray-Spira, T. Oksanen, J. E. Ferrie, A. Okuloff, J. Pentti, J. Head, M. Goldberg and J. Vahtera

Diabetici Medicine Accepted manuscript online: 27 APR 2015 08:22AM EST | DOI: 10.1111/dme.12787

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MedicalResearch.com Interview with: Marianna Virtanen PhD (2015). Obesity, Inactivity and Smoking Predict Disability in Diabetes