Is HIV A Risk Factor for Diabetes?
Jennifer Barrett, Assistant Editor
Adults who have HIV are more likely to develop diabetes than the general population, a study published in BMJ Open Diabetes Research & Care estimates. The findings, taken from the Medical Monitoring Project and National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, also associate more diabetes cases in younger, non-obese adults with HIV than in non-HIV controls.
The study analyzed a nationally representative US sample of adults with HIV receiving medical care to determine the prevalence of diabetes between people who have HIV and the group who did not have HIV. Because treatment for HIV has advanced significantly, individuals with the disease are now living longer, which puts them at an added risk for chronic diseases such as diabetes. Although the burden of diabetes has been documented in the general population, data regarding diabetes’ association with people living with HIV have been lacking.
The goal of the study was to analyze nationally representative data by estimating diabetes prevalence among a nationally representative sample of adults with HIV, comparing the prevalence of diabetes in this population compared with the general US adult population, and identifying factors associated with prevalent diabetes among HIV-infected adults.
The study found that the prevalence of diabetes among adults with HIV receiving medical care was 10.3%, and that individuals who are younger and are not obese are more likely to have diabetes compared to the general population.
The researchers concluded that the results should entice health care professionals to follow existing screening guidelines, which recommend FBG and HBA1c be obtained prior to and after starting antiretroviral therapy. Additional research should determine whether screening guidelines should include HIV infection as a risk factor for diabetes.
Hernandez-Romieu A, Garg S, Rosenberg E, et al. Is diabetes prevalence higher among HIV-infected individuals compared with the general population? Evidence from MMP and NHANES 2009-2010. BMJ Open Diabetes Research & Care. 2017;5:e000304. doi: 10.1136/bmjdrc-2016-000304.