Alikor CA, Emem-Chioma PC

Available online Jul 19, 2018.

[ Original ] Volume 24, Issue 2, 2015, Pages 114-124


The prevalence of diabetes mellitus is reaching epidemic rates globally. It had an estimated global incidence of 220 million in 2010.
Different studies in SSA and Nigeria in particular have reported increasing prevalence of diabetes in the rural areas.This may be
attributed to the rapid 'westernization' of lifestyle in the rural African community.Only few rural survey have been conducted in the
Nigeria oil-rich Niger Delta region necessitating this study with the aim of determining the prevalence of diabetes and impaired
fasting glucose (IFG).
This was a cross-sectional survey involving 500 subjects aged 15 years and above in a typical rural community of Rivers State,Niger
Delta region of Nigeria. A questionnaire administered by face-to-face interview was used to assess socio-demographic
characteristics of the subjects.Medical history such as prior knowledge of blood sugar status and family history of diabetes were all
elicited by the questionnaire.Anthropometric and blood pressure measurements were taken in a standardized manner and body
mass indices (BMI) calculated as weight in kilogram divided by the square of height in meters.Venous blood glucose was measured by
the glucose oxidase method. Diabetes mellitus was defined using fasting plasma glucose (FPG) ≥7.0 mmol/l (126 mg/dl) and
individuals who were previously known to have diabetes based on history of treatment were also classified to have diabetes. Lipid
profile and uric acid of patients were also checked.
There were 156 males and 344 females with male to female ratio of 1:2.3.The females were relatively of younger age than the males
(40.62±16.6 years versus 42.84±17.8).The overall mean age was 41.32±17.The mean fasting plasma glucose among those with
diabetes was 11.14±4. 00mmol/L while the mean for the subjects with impaired fasting glucose was 6.31±0.25mmol/l. The
prevalence of diabetes was 2.2% with no significant gender difference (2.6% in males versus 2.0% in females;X2=0.35;p=0.84). The
prevalence of Impaired fasting glucose (IFG) was 2.4% with no significant gender difference (Female 2.6% versus males 1.9%;p=0.88).
The mean fasting glucose increased significantly with blood pressure (p=0.05),waist circumference (p<0.001),uric acid level (0.02),
triglyceride level (<0.001) and age (p= 0.02).The correlation analyses showed that age, systolic blood pressure, waist-hip-ratio and
triglycerides are positively correlated with diabetes and impaired fasting glucose in this study.
There is a low prevalence of diabetes and IFG in this rural community which may be associated to the high level of physical activity
found among the study subjects in this community. However, this study confirmed that increasing age, abdominal obesity, systolic
blood pressure and triglyceride level have positive relationship with the prevalence of diabetes and IFG.There is hence more need
for intensified screening for diabetes,pre-diabetes and associated risk factors in order to curb or at least reduce diabetes prevalence
and its attendant complications.


low prevalence of diabetes,