Aims: Diabetic neuropathy (DN) is a “Cinderella” complication, particularly in the Middle East. A high prevalence of undiagnosed DN and those at risk of diabetic foot ulceration (DFU) is a major concern. We have determined the prevalence of DN and its risk factors, DFU, and those at risk of DFU in patients with type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) in secondary care in Qatar. Materials and methods: Adults with T2DM were randomly selected from the two National Diabetes Centers in Qatar. DN was defined by the presence of neuropathic symptoms and a vibration perception threshold (VPT) ≥ 15 V. Participants with a VPT ≥ 25 V were categorized as high risk for DFU. Painful DN was defined by a DN4 score ≥4. Logistic regression analysis was used to identify predictors of DN. Results: In 1082 adults with T2DM (age 54 ± 11 years, duration of diabetes 10.0 ± 7.7 years, 60.6% males), the prevalence of DN was 23.0% (95% CI, 20.5%-25.5%) of whom 33.7% (95% CI, 27.9%-39.6%) were at high risk of DFU, and 6.3% had DFU; 82.0% of the patients with DN were previously undiagnosed. The prevalence of DN increased with age and duration of diabetes and was associated with poor glycaemic control (HbA1c ≥ 9%) AOR = 2.1 (95% CI, 1.3-3.2), hyperlipidaemia AOR = 2.7 (95% CI, 1.5-5.0), and hypertension AOR = 2.0 (95% CI, 1.2-3.4). Conclusions: Despite DN affecting 23% of adults with T2DM, 82% had not been previously diagnosed with one-third at high risk for DFU. This argues for annual screening and identification of patients with DN. Furthermore, we identify hyperglycaemia, hyperlipidaemia, and hypertension as predictors of DN.
- diabetic neuropathy
- painful diabetic neuropathy, diabetic foot ulceration
- type 2 diabetes mellitus
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Internal Medicine
- Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism