Background: Although the increase in the prevalence of obesity among Australian diabetics (DM) generally is well documented, little information has been published specifically about the situation among older Australians living in North Queensland. This is despite the reportedly growing geriatric population in the region (1).
Objectives: The main aim of the study is to determine prevalence of obesity in the elderly subjects with DM.
Methods: Hospital-based cross sectional study was prospectively conducted on patients admitted at the Townsville Hospital aged >70 years. Questionnaire was administered and anthropometric measurements were recorded in subjects with DM (study group) and non-DM (control group).
Results: Data of 68 subjects were analysed comprising of 31 DM and 37 non-DM. Prevalence of obesity (BMI>25 kg/m2) was 74.7% compared with 45.9% in non-DM X2 = 5.6, P = 0.018. The mean BMI and body weight were higher in DM than in non-DM, 28.2 + 6.7 vs 25.2 + 5.3 kg/m2 and 78.5 + 18 vs 68.6 + 17 kg, both P < 0.05. Gender, mean age, and prevalence of other co-morbidities were similar in both groups.
Conclusion: We report high prevalence of obesity in diabetes elderly population. Prevention of obesity may likely reduce rate of DM in our geriatric subjects. Being pilot project further prospective studies on a larger population are needed to confirm our findings.