Back and neck pains are likely in obese diabetics

March 22, 2019

Low back pain or neck pain is common later in life, but research has suggested that diabetes makes this type of chronic pain more likely to develop – back pain in 35% of some 131,000 diabetics and neck pain in another 24% of 6,560 diabetics.

Diabetes is a chronic disease affecting blood sugar management; type-1 diabetes develops early on, when the pancreas produces no insulin, and type-2 diabetes develops in obesity, when the body lacks insulin to convert blood sugar into energy.

Researchers have studied data from 11 separate sources in six countries that looked at back pain, neck pain, spinal pain or some combination of these issues, with varying definitions of pain reported. However, only one study in the analysis found no connection between diabetes and the risk of back, neck or spinal pain.

Senior study author Manuela Ferreira of the University of Sydney, Australia has suggested that obesity and physical inactivity could risk back and neck pain more than diabetes itself, so proper management of body weight and physical activity is key.

Dr. Ahmed Hassoon of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, Baltimore has explained that excess weight beyond the capacity of the spine will destabilise it, which can compromise spinal health and contribute to back pain.

Hassoon has added that long-term uncontrolled diabetes impacts the blood vessels, nerves, muscles, and bone to later generate all kinds of musculoskeletal symptoms, like chronic pain.


Category: Education, Features

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