Estimates of deaths from diabetes suggest that it may a leading cause of death worldwide, researchers report. In 2000, approximately 2.9 million died of diabetes, about three times that of previous estimates.
“Diabetes is a significant cause of death in adults of working age, even in low-income countries where diabetes is often not recognized as a public health problem,” lead investigator Dr. Gojka Roglic, of the World Health Organisation in Geneva, told Reuters Health. “This fact is not captured in existing national or global health statistical reports, which are used for planning interventions and allocating resources.”
In their report, published in the journal Diabetes Care, Roglic and colleagues note that most international mortality statistics rely on the underlying cause of death as recorded on the death certificate. However, this approach has limitations and more sophisticated methods have been developed and applied to estimate cause-specific deaths for AIDS, tuberculosis and other diseases, but not diabetes.
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