300m will suffer from diabetes by 2025, warn experts

DUBAI - Leading experts on diabetes from around the globe have gathered in Dubai and warned that more efforts are required to face the challenge posed by the rapidly growing threat of diabetes, a disease which is fast becoming a major problem within the region and the world as a whole.

By Hani M. Bathish

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Published: Mon 24 May 2004, 9:28 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 2:26 PM

Around 300 million people will be diabetic by the year 2025, according to Dr Martin J. Abrahamson, Acting Chief Medical Officer of Joslin Diabetes Centre and associate professor at Harvard Medical School, Boston, who addressed a gathering of eminent medical practitioners at "Speciality Practi-Med, Advances in Diabetes Programme", a two-day continuous medical education event being held at the Knowledge Village.

"Diabetes is not only a chronic disease associated with significant morbidity and mortality, but it is also a major public health problem of epidemic proportions," Dr Abrahamson said.

The event is organised by Dubai Health Care City (DHCC) and Harvard Medical International (HMI) as part of their joint programme to bring the latest and best in medicine and health care delivery to the Middle East.

"The prevalence of the disease is increasing at an alarming rate in the world and it is estimated that by 2025 diabetes will affect 300 million people world-wide," he pointed out.

On Sunday's speakers at the event included Dr Ghaida Kaddaha, Head of the Diabetology Unit at Rashid Hospital, Dr Julian Seifter, Associate Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and Brigham Women's Hospital, Dr Ali Khalil, consultant endocrinologist at Abu Dhabi's Shaikh Khalifa Medical Centre, Dr Mona Arekat, consultant endocrinologist and acting medical director of Joslin Diabetes Centre Affiliate in Bahrain and Dr Jassim Al Suwaidi, senior consultant cardiologist at Qatar's Hamad General Hospital.

The panel of speakers agreed that diabetes is not an isolated illness as it affects various parts of the human body and its functions, resulting in death.

They stressed that the disease is growing rapidly throughout the world, in the Middle East and in the Gulf region, adding that measures must be taken to slow down the rapid spread of this dreaded disease.

Participants praised the role of the DHCC and Harvard Medical International in taking up the challenge of spreading awareness about diabetes in the region.

Speakers pointed out that even the medical community at times is not aware of the speed at which this disease is growing, adding that medical practitioners as much as the general public need to be made aware of the latest medical technology available to combat this disease.

The topics discussed during the two-day event include prevention, diagnosis and treatment of type 2 diabetes, advances in insulin therapy, screening, prevention and treatment of diabetic kidney disease and the interrelationship between diabetes and hypertension.

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