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ORIGINAL ARTICLE
Year : 2014  |  Volume : 5  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 2

Effects of diabetes complications and glycaemic control on some mineral elements in Nigerians patients with diabetes


1 Departments of Chemical Pathology, Faculty of Clinical Medicine, Ebonyi State University, Abakaliki; Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Biological Sciences, Ebonyi State University, Abakaliki - Nigeria
2 Departments of Chemical Pathology, Faculty of Clinical Medicine, Ebonyi State University, Abakaliki - Nigeria
3 Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Biological Sciences, Ebonyi State University, Abakaliki - Nigeria
4 Department of Community Medicine, Federal Teaching Hospital, Abakaliki - Nigeria
5 Demartment of Pharmacology and Therapeutics, Faculty of Clinical Medicine, Ebonyi State University, Abakaliki - Nigeria

Correspondence Address:
E I Ugwuja
Departments of Chemical Pathology, Faculty of Clinical Medicine, Ebonyi State University, Abakaliki; Department of Biochemistry, Faculty of Biological Sciences, Ebonyi State University, Abakaliki - Nigeria

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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None


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To investigate the effects of diabetes complications and glycaemic control on some mineral elements in Nigerian patients with diabetes, seventy patients with diabetes (37 males and 33 females) aged 29 to 72 years and 30 patients without diabetes matched for age, sex and socio-demographic data were enrolled. Medical history including duration of disease and complications were obtained from the patients' folders while fasting blood samples were collected for glucose, mineral element and other biochemical analysis using standard laboratory methods and techniques. Glycated haemoglobin was used to assess glycaemic control, with values ≤ 7.0% as good and > 7.0% as poor control. Mean duration of diabetes was 4.83 ΁ 4.09 years (range 1-28 years). There was no significant difference in the plasma levels of iron, magnesium and zinc between patients with and without diabetes. Patients with diabetes with poor glycaemic control had lower plasma magnesium and zinc (p > 0.05) but higher plasma iron (p > 0.05) in comparison to their counterparts with good glycaemic control. The most prevalent single complications observed in patients with diabetes were hypertension > renal disease > foot ulcer, with about 10% having both hypertension and renal disease, while about 27% had no complication at all, although no significant difference in the incidence of chronic complications between patients with diabetes with good glycaemic control and those without was observed (X2 = 0.169; p = 0.212). Again, none of the elements correlated with glycated haemoglobin or fasting plasma glucose, although patients with diabetes with complications had lower plasma iron (p > 0.05) but higher zinc and magnesium than patients with diabetes without complications. However, patients with diabetes with complications had significantly higher plasma urea (p < 0.05) in comparison to their counterparts without complications (6.30 ΁ 22.60 vs. 5.07 ΁ 2.39 mmol/l, p = 0.053). It may be concluded that diabetes complications and glycaemic control have no significant effect on plasma iron, magnesium and zinc levels in Nigerian patients with diabetes with short duration of the disease. Further studies on the long term effects of diabetes complications and glycaemic control on mineral element status are desired, food diversification among patients with diabetes is highly advocated.


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