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Cutaneous problems in elderly diabetics: A population-based comparative cross-sectional survey


 Department of Dermatology and Venereology, Government Medical College, Thrissur, Kerala, India

Correspondence Address:
N Asokan,
Prashanthi, KRA-11, Kanattukara PO, Thrissur - 680 011, Kerala
India
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

Background : There are few population-based studies on prevalence of cutaneous problems in diabetes mellitus. Aims: To identify skin problems associated with diabetes mellitus among elderly persons in a village in Kerala. Methods: In this population-based cross-sectional survey, we compared the prevalence of skin problems among 287 elderly diabetics (aged 65 years or more) with 275 randomly selected elderly persons without diabetes mellitus. Results: Numbness, tingling and burning sensation of extremities,"prayer sign", finger pebbling, skin tags, stiff joints and acanthosis nigricans were noted more frequently in diabetics as compared to non-diabetics. Ache in extremities, dermatophytosis, candidiasis, seborrheic keratoses/dermatosis papulosa nigra, xerosis/ichthyosis, idiopathic guttate hypomelanosis, nonspecific itching, and eczema were equally frequent in both groups. Among the diagnostic categories, neurovascular, metabolic and autoimmune findings were associated with diabetes mellitus, whereas bacterial and fungal infections were not. Limitations : Initial misclassification errors, no laboratory confirmation of dermatological diagnosis during survey, coexistence of findings related to aging and not analyzing the effects of glycemic level, concurrent diseases and medications. Conclusions : Numbness, tingling and burning sensation of extremities, prayer sign, finger pebbling, skin tags, stiff joints and acanthosis nigricans were associated with diabetes mellitus among elderly persons in a village in Kerala.


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    -  Asokan N
    -  Binesh V G
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Online since 15th March '04
Published by Wolters Kluwer - Medknow