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Type II diabetes is spreading like an epidemic worldwide. Currently, 9 million people in Germany have diabetes, and the number of unreported cases is very likely far higher.
Since apparently more and more people suffer from the metabolic disease diabetes (or "diabetes"), according to a report by the "Greenpeace magazine" Prof. Peter Schwarz from the Dresden University Clinic has emphasized the need for a nationwide diabetes register.
The Dresden professor and president of the 6th World Congress on Diabetes Prevention, which has been taking place in Dresden since April 9, presented to the German press agency the experiences with such registers in other countries and demonstrated that in Finland the quality of diabetes treatments could have been increased while costs could have been reduced.
According to Schwarz, there is an urgent need for action with regard to diabetes, because the disease is spreading like an epidemic from a global perspective - for Germany, this means that there are currently just under 9 million diabetics and around four million additional cases in which those affected do not yet know about their disease. If development continues in recent years, according to Schwarz, there could be as many as 14 million diabetics in 2020, plus a "dark figure" of possibly up to six million people affected. However, the number of diabetics forecast for 2020 alone is not a cause for concern, because in many cases the disease also brings about various secondary diseases, e.g. Depression, high blood pressure, blindness or amputations, which would mean another - unmanageable - financial burden for the health system.
The establishment of a nationwide register could bring clear advantages in view of the increasing number of patients: For example, in this way, determine which secondary diseases occur more or less often after a diabetes - for example, heart attacks are believed to be the main cause of diabetes in 70% of cases. Another positive effect of a diabetic registry would be for the professor to be able to provide generally better information, advice and legal education for the patients - this would in turn mean that those affected could be much more informed and confident with their respective doctors than before.
Since diabetes is often caused by obesity, among other things, and according to Schwarz, a third of the German population is genetically predisposed to being overweight, it is also necessary to take a more preventive approach to the disease nationally and across Europe than before. (sb, April 10, 2010)
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