In a nutshell
This study investigated the link between diabetes and atrial fibrillation (AF; irregular heart rhythm). It was found that having diabetes or prediabetes increased the risk of AF and that the risk increased as blood glucose levels increased.
Some studies have found a link between diabetes, prediabetes (persistently high blood glucose levels, but lower than in diabetes) and AF. AF is associated with a higher risk of stroke and heart disease. The link between diabetes and AF is still being investigated.
Methods & findings
This study examined data from 34 other studies. In total, 10 244 043 people participated in these studies. They were followed up for between 1 to 50 years, depending on the study, for the development of AF.
Participants with diabetes were 28% more likely to develop AF than those without diabetes or prediabetes. Participants with prediabetes had a 20% greater risk of developing AF than those without diabetes or prediabetes. It was also found that for every 20 mg/dl that blood glucose increased, the risk of developing AF increased by 11%.
The bottom line
The study concluded that diabetes and prediabetes increased the risk of developing AF. It was also found that increasing blood glucose levels further increased the risk of AF.
The fine print
This study did not distinguish between type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Furthermore, differences between the different studies may have limited comparisons. For example, the duration of follow-up was very short in some studies and very long in others.
Diabetes is just one factor that may increase the risk of AF. Discuss with your physician the risk of you developing AF and how can it be prevented.
Published By :
Journal of Diabetes and its Complications
May 01, 2018
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