Posttraumatic stress disorder associated with type 2 diabetes

The presence of posttraumatic stress disorder is significantly associated with the development of type 2 diabetes. This is the finding of scientists from the Helmholtz Zentrum München and the University Hospital Gießen and Marburg who worked with data from the population-based KORA cohort study. A sustained activation of the hormonal stress axis due to chronic stress symptoms is most likely a major causing mechanism. The scientists have published their results in the Journal of Psychosomatic Research.

People suffering from posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) have a significant risk of developing type 2 diabetes. PTSD is a prolonged syndrome whose symptoms develop in the aftermath of extremely of exceptionally threatening or catastrophic nature. A correlation between stress from and diabetes mellitus has already been under discussion for some time, but now Dr. Karoline Lukaschek from the Institute of Epidemiology II (EPI II) at the Helmholtz Zentrum München (HMGU) and Prof. Johannes Kruse from the Department of and Psychotherapy, University Hospital Gießen and Marburg, and their colleagues have been able to provide the first proof of a significant association between the two illnesses.

To this end, they analyzed data from the population-based KORA cohort study in which the data were collected by means of a standardized survey of all participants and also a glucose tolerance test. A total of 50 participants was identified who suffered from PTSD, as well as an additional 261 who displayed symptoms of partial PTSD. The study population also included 498 participants who suffered from manifest type 2 diabetes and 333 subjects who  displayed signs of a pre-diabetic . The evaluation resulted in a significant association between type 2 diabetes and PTSD; prediabetes, on the other hand, was not associated with . The scientists surmise that the chronic stress that PTSD patients permanently suffer leads to changes in the hormonal response patterns. This can have a morbid influence on the metabolism and the glucose utilization. Subsequent studies should now examine the temporal and causal relationships further.

"Further clarification of the relationships between psychological factors and metabolic disorders will be an important task for diabetes research in the future", remarked Prof. Karl-Heinz Ladwig, research group leader at EPI II. "Patients with PTSD and other mental disorders should be given therapy that includes treatment of metabolic risk factors."

More information: Lukaschek, K. et al. (2013), Relationship between posttraumatic stress disorder and Type 2 Diabetes in a population-based cross-sectional study with 2970 participants, Journal of Psychosomatic Research, 74, 340-345. www.sciencedirect.com/science/… ii/S0022399912003455

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Workplace stress poses risk to health

Apr 23, 2013

Stressful situations at work can have a negative impact on the cardiovascular system and the metabolism. Stress, which is transmitted by direct and indirect signaling pathways, leads to an inflammatory response in the body, ...

Young vets with PTSD receive more CT scans

May 02, 2013

(HealthDay)—Computed tomography (CT) scans are significantly more commonly used in young veterans with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) compared to young veterans without PTSD, according to research ...

Emergency room crowding tied to ACS-induced PTSD

Feb 14, 2013

(HealthDay)—Exposure to emergency department crowding correlates with acute coronary syndrome (ACS)-induced posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) symptoms one month after ACS, according to a research letter ...

Recommended for you

Could summer camp be the key to world peace?

14 hours ago

According to findings from a new study by University of Chicago Booth School of Business Professor Jane Risen, and Chicago Booth doctoral student Juliana Schroeder, it may at least be a start.

Gender disparities in cognition will not diminish

Jul 28, 2014

The study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Science, investigated the extent to which improvements in living conditions and educational opportunities over a person's life affect cognitive abilities and th ...

Facial features are the key to first impressions

Jul 28, 2014

A new study by researchers in the Department of Psychology at the University of York shows that it is possible to accurately predict first impressions using measurements of physical features in everyday images of faces, such ...

User comments