Diabetes is among the leading causes of death on the island.
This was revealed by health officials as they met to conduct a workshop on caring for the Diabetic Foot recently
Public Health Specialist, Trudy Christian, in presenting an analysis of diabetes in Dominica revealed that between 2005 and 2009, diabetes was the second leading cause of death on the island.
A more recent analysis- from 2010 to 2014 -revealed that while the disease remains among the top causes, more females were affected by the disease during that period. The rate of amputation is, however, higher among men for the same period.
According to Christian, statistics show that amputations are done mostly on persons over seventy. However, data is revealing some changes in this trend.
“Interesting to note,” she says, “that there are amputations in younger age groups and that is of concern to us. We have been seeing quiet a number of amputations in the 45-54 age group, more than we would like to see. Amputations are occurring in the younger population.”
Christian says that data is generally captured at the district level, however due to some challenges; the real situation with the disease is not fully reflected in the data.
And as for a way forward, Christian emphasizes that prevention is the cure.
“The complications should be prevented, we need early and effective management of these complications and [we need to] pay closer attention to the data. As health professionals, we should consistently look at trends and see what we can do to counteract some of the trends which we’re seeing,” she said.
Diabetes is a chronic lifelong condition that affects the body’s ability to use the energy found in food.
There are three major types of diabetes: Type I, Type II and gestational diabetes.