Diabetes diagnosis may impact health behaviors of family

July 25, 2018

(HealthDay)—Partners of people with newly diagnosed diabetes have small but significant differences in health-related behavioral changes compared with partners of people without diabetes, according to a study published in the July/August issue of the Annals of Family Medicine.

Julie A. Schmittdiel, Ph.D., from Kaiser Permanente in Oakland, Calif., and colleagues studied Kaiser Permanente Northern California plan members to assess whether partners of people with newly diagnosed changed their compared with partners of people without diabetes. The analysis included 180,910 couples; partners of those with diabetes were matched in a 5-to-1 ratio to partners of those without diabetes.

The researchers found that after adjustment for baseline characteristics, partners of individuals with newly diagnosed diabetes had significantly higher rates of participation in weight management-related health education classes (risk ratio [RR], 1.5), smoking cessation medication use (RR, 1.25), glucose screening (RR, 1.07), clinically meaningful weight loss (RR, 1.06), lipid screening (RR, 1.05), influenza vaccination (RR, 1.03), and blood pressure screening (RR, 1.02), compared to partners of individuals without diabetes.

"This finding suggests a diabetes diagnosis within a family may be a teachable moment to improve health behaviors at the household level," the authors write.

One author disclosed financial ties to the Novo Nordisk Foundation.

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