Meaningful PTSD decrease may halve risk of type 2 diabetes

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In a study from Saint Louis University, scientists found treatment for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) that leads to an improvement in symptoms was linked to a 49% lower risk of type 2 diabetes.

PTSD affects up to 12 percent of civilians and nearly 30 percent of the veteran population.

Those with PTSD are at risk for other health issues and improvement in PTSD symptoms is associated with parallel improvements in depression, emotional well-being, sleep, blood pressure and general physical health.

PTSD is linked to an increased risk of type 2 diabetes, which may be explained by the high prevalence of obesity, glucose dysregulation, inflammation, metabolic syndrome and depression among those diagnosed with PTSD versus those without PTSD.

In the study, the team reviewed Veterans Health Affairs medical record data from 2008 to 2015.

The researchers selected 5,916 cases from among a veteran patient population aged 18 to 70 who had more than two visits to PTSD specialty care between 2008 and 2012. The patients were followed through until 2015.

A total of 1,598 patients with PTSD and free of diabetes risk were available for analysis. Clinically meaningful symptom reduction is a decrease of 20 points on the PTSD Checklist score.

The team found in patients with only PTSD, clinically meaningful symptom decrease is linked to a lower risk for diabetes.

In patients with PTSD and depression, the team found improvement in PTSD was coupled with a decrease in depression.

Thus, a decreased risk for type 2 diabetes appears to follow a large PTSD symptom decrease and in patients with both PTSD and depression, improvement in both conditions may be necessary to reduce the risk for type 2 diabetes.

If you care about PTSD, please read studies about PTSD: what you need to know, and depression, anxiety and PTSD may not be mental diseases at all.

For more information about health, please see recent studies that heavy cannabis use may decrease incidence of diabetes, and results showing a critical trigger for type 2 diabetes.

The study was conducted by Jeffrey Scherrer et al and published in JAMA Psychiatry.

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