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Diabetes Res Clin Pract. 2007 Sep;77(3):433-7. Epub 2007 Feb 8.

Awareness about diabetes and its complications in the general and diabetic population in a city in southern India.

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Diabetes Research Centre and M.V. Hospital for Diabetes, WHO Collaborating Centre for Research, Education and Training in Diabetes, No. 4 Main Road, Royapuram, Chennai 600 013, India.



The study was done to find out the levels of awareness on diabetes in urban adult Indian population and to identify factors that influenced the awareness, including presence of diabetes.


In population aged > or =20 years (n=3681, M=1769, F=1912), details regarding awareness about diabetes in relation with physical activity, healthy and unhealthy diet, causes, symptoms, prevention, complications and measures to improve health were collected using a questionnaire. A high total score indicated good knowledge. Influence of age, gender, educational status, occupation and presence of diabetic history was analysed.


Fifty percent of subjects scored less than 15. Maximum scored was 51/65. The median total score was 16. Total score was significantly lower in women than in men (15.0 versus 17.0, p<0.0001). Educational status was low in women. Higher education (16.0 versus 12.0, p<0.0001) and professional or executive jobs (17.0 versus 15.0, p<0.0001) were significantly associated with better awareness. Age had no influence. Knowledge regarding causes of diabetes, its prevention and the methods to improve health was significantly low among the general population. Diabetic subjects had better knowledge about symptoms of diabetes and the preventive aspects.


The low median score indicated that the awareness was generally poor. The score was low especially in women and subjects with low education. The study highlights the urgent need for strategies to spread awareness about diabetes in the general population. Diabetic subjects also required better education on many aspects.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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