Diabetics at much higher risk of heart attacks and strokes, study shows

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DIABETICS are almost 50 per cent more likely to have a heart attack than people who do not suffer from the condition.

The report suggests people with diabetes are 65 per cent more likely to have heart failure than the rest of the population.

Patients are also at a greater risk of other potentially fatal conditions, such as angina, stroke and needing amputations, the report shows.

Between 2010 and 2011, 17,900 diabetics suffered from a stroke, 9,800 needed a kidney transplant or dialysis and 1,700 needed a “major amputation”.

Diabetics were also at a higher risk of death than people without the condition, the authors wrote.

The excess risk is higher among people with Type 1 diabetes. This type, which develops when the body cannot produce any insulin, is an autoimmune condition that accounts for 10 per cent of all cases of diabetes.

The authors of the report said the death rate among people with the condition was 135 per cent higher than the general population.

People with Type 2 diabetes, which accounts for 90 per cent of all cases, and occurs when the body does not produce enough insulin for it to function properly, have a 36 per cent excess risk, the authors add.

Diabetes UK said the NHS should focus more on preventing diabetes-related heart disease. Chief executive Barbara Young said: “We want everyone with diabetes to get their cholesterol, blood pressure and blood glucose checked once a year.”

“Unless this happens, people with diabetes will continue to be at much greater risk of heart attacks.”