Major diabetes milestone for Leicester researchers

Posted by ap507 at Apr 07, 2016 09:18 AM |
One million people take Know Your Risk assessment on Diabetes UK website

Issued by the Leicester Diabetes Centre on 6 April

A method for assessing people’s chances of having or developing Type 2 diabetes created by Leicester researchers has reached a major milestone.

One million people have now been through the Know Your Risk section of the Diabetes UK website, which identifies people who may be at high risk of the condition or currently have undiagnosed Type 2 diabetes.

The landmark total comes ahead of World Health Day (Thursday, April 7) where the theme is diabetes and people are being urged to complete the assessment as part of a national campaign.

The questionnaire uses data on age, sex, waist circumference, BMI, ethnicity, family history of diabetes and high blood pressure. It gives a calculated analysis of an individual’s risk of having or developing the condition. 

The original version is known as Leicester Diabetes Risk Score and was adapted to go online by the charity. The paper version is available in Boots and Tesco.

Professor Kamlesh Khunti, from the University of Leicester and the Leicester Diabetes Centre, who has led the project, said: “Type 2 diabetes is a serious condition which, if left untreated or poorly managed, can lead to devastating complications such as amputation, blindness, heart attack and stroke.

“This online version of the risk score either can easily identify people who may have diabetes or are at risk and can have the appropriate management plans by their general practitioners to reduce their risk of developing diabetes or its complications.”

Dr Laura Gray, Reader of Population and Public Health Sciences at the University of Leicester based at the Leicester Diabetes Centre, who also worked on the risk score added: “The risk score is easy, simple to use and accessible but provides people with essential information which they can act upon.”

Professor Melanie Davies CBE, also from the University of Leicester and the Leicester Diabetes Centre, was also involved in creating the risk score.

The risk score has also been translated into Gujarati, Bengali, Punjabi and Urdu with a view to being rolled out across Leicestershire where there is a large South Asian population.

The assessment was created in 2011 and is now recommended by health watchdog  NICE for the identification of those at risk of diabetes.

It was developed on the back of a screening study examining more than 6,500 people with, or at risk of, Type 2 diabetes in Leicestershire.

Diabetes UK is urging people to use the online version. Helen Dickens, Head of Prevention at Diabetes UK, said: “A staggering 11.9 million people in the UK are now at increased risk of developing Type 2 diabetes. However the good news is that when an individual knows they are at increased risk they hold the power to turn this around by making relatively simple lifestyle changes.

“This is why it is so important to get online now to find out your risk of Type 2 diabetes and then take any necessary steps to reduce this risk, as not doing so can lead to devastating consequences.”

The Leicester Diabetes Centre is an international centre of excellence in diabetes research, education and innovation and is led by Professor Davies CBE and Professor Khunti.

Hosted at Leicester General Hospital, the Leicester Diabetes Centre is a partnership between the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust and the University of Leicester.

To found out your risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, visit www.diabetes.org.uk/risk.

Notes for editors:

  • For further details, to arrange an interview or more photographs, email oliver.jelley@ojpr.co.uk
  • The Diabetes Research Centre is based at the Leicester Diabetes Centre.
  • The Leicester Diabetes Centre is an international centre of excellence in diabetes research, education and innovation and is led by Professor Melanie Davies and Professor Kamlesh Khunti.
  • Hosted at Leicester General Hospital, the Leicester Diabetes Centre is a partnership between the University Hospitals of Leicester NHS Trust and the University of Leicester, working with the city and county Clinical Commissioning Groups. It is a leading applied health research unit committed to improving the lives and care of people with diabetes and other long-term conditions.
  • The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) is funded by the Department of Health to improve the health and wealth of the nation through research. The NIHR is the research arm of the NHS. Since its establishment in April 2006, the NIHR has transformed research in the NHS. It has increased the volume of applied health research for the benefit of patients and the public, driven faster translation of basic science discoveries into tangible benefits for patients and the economy, and developed and supported the people who conduct and contribute to applied health research. The NIHR plays a key role in the Government’s strategy for economic growth, attracting investment by the life-sciences industries through its world-class infrastructure for health research. Together, the NIHR people, programmes, centres of excellence and systems represent the most integrated health research system in the world. For further information, visit http://www.nihr.ac.uk.
  • For more information about the Leicester Diabetes Centre, visit http://www.leicesterdiabetescentre.org.uk.

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