Diabetes and disability among Mexican Americans: the effect of different measures of diabetes on its association with disability

Macheledt, J.E.; Vernon, S.W.

Journal of Clinical Epidemiology 45(5): 519-528


ISSN/ISBN: 0895-4356
PMID: 1534120
DOI: 10.1016/0895-4356(92)90101-r
Accession: 007201803

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The association of non-insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus and disability was evaluated in a population of Mexican Americans from the southwest U.S. using data from the Hispanic Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. Among the total sample of persons who completed a clinical examination, 14.6% reported a limitation of job performance, the inability to complete housework, or the inability to perform activities of daily living. Among the subsample who completed the clinical examination and reported having diabetes, 31.6% claimed similar disability. In those respondents who also completed an oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) or who were currrently receiving insulin, the prevalence of disability was 25% in persons with an abnormal OGTT and 40.2% in those who were receiving insulin compared with 14.9% in those with a normal OGTT. Self-reported diabetes was positively associated with functional impairment in the examined population after adjusting for demographic variables and comordidity; however, diabetes confirmed by OGTT was not significantly associated with disability after adjustment for other factors. Differences in pre-existing health status between persons who completed the OGTT and those who did not are discussed in relation to these results.