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Fondo oculare di persona affetta da retinopatia diabetica

The surge of diabetes

Diabetics in Italy have doubled in 30 years . I.B.D.O. report: 22% of diabetics suffer from retinopathy

report-2017-copertina.pngWe are witnessing an explosion in the number of diabetics, a trend assisted by unhealthy habits, such as sedentariness and unhealthy eating. In Italy alone, the number of diabetics has almost doubled: in 2015, 3.27 million people, corresponding to 5.4% of the population, were declared to be suffering from diabetes, whereas 30 years previous, the percentage stood at 2.9%. This illness, caused by high blood sugar levels, can also jeopardize our sight, since it can damage the retina (diabetic retinopathy).

A report presented on April 17th 2018 in Rome emphasized the presence of a large gap between the North and the South of Italy. The number of diabetics is higher than the national average in Calabria, Basilicata, Sicily, Campania, Puglia, Abruzzo and Lazio, whereas the lowest concentration is found in the autonomous provinces of Trento and Bolzano and in Liguria. This divide is similar to the one between rural areas and urban centres. This research was conducted by the Italian Diabetes & Obesity Barometer Report, which was written by I.B.D.O. Foundation and the University of Rome Tor Vergata.

Fondo oculare di persona affetta da retinopatia diabetica
Fondo oculare di persona affetta da retinopatia diabetica
According to the WHO, there are 422 million diabetics in the world. Nine diabetics out of ten are affected by type 2 diabetes, which doesn’t require the administration of insulin. The figure for adult diabetics has risen globally from 4.7% in 1980, to 8.5% in 2014.

Diabetes is a chronic illness and early diagnosis is important. Blood sugar tests are essential as high sugar levels over an extended period of time can damage various organs. The I.B.D.O. report explains:

Diabetes is also the first cause of cardiovascular and kidney diseases, illnesses of the eyes and of the lower limbs. Fifteen percent of people with diabetes suffer from coronary artery disease, 22% suffer from retinopathy that can cause blindness, 38% have renal impairment […] that can lead to dialysis and 3% have problems to their lower limbs that can lead to amputation.

Sources: IBDO, Regioni

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