More persons became diabetic after COVID infection: group

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Mar 31 2022 03:20 PM

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MANILA - More persons became diabetic after getting infected with COVID-19, the Philippine Society of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism (PSEDM) said Thursday.

This was found through a meta analysis study of local and foreign hospitals' experience during the pandemic, according to Dr. Carol Montano, vice president of the PSEDM.

"Meron po tayong tinatawag na new onset diabetes dahil sa pagkakaroon ng COVID. Nakita po ito sa isang meta analysis na yung 18 years old and above nakakita po tayo ng pagtaas o pagdami ng kaso," she said in a televised press briefing.

(There's what we call new onset diabetes after contracting COVID. This was discovered in a meta analysis which found there was an increase in diabetic patients among those 18 years old and above.)

A person's immunity is lowered when they have high blood glucose and this is worsened by the cytokine storm, which affects a person's level, according to Dr. Aurora Macaballug, also an official of the PSEDM.

Some COVID-19 patients are given steroids, which can increase blood sugar, Macaballug said.

"Pag nagka-COVID po, ang iba binibigyan ng steroid. Ang 
steroid po, again, that’s another drug na pwede magpataas ng blood sugar," she told reporters Wednesday.

(If someone contracts COVID, they can be given steroid, which is another drug that can increase blood sugar.)

One in five virus patients or 20 percent are diabetic, Macaballug said, citing a study on Philippine COVID-19 outcomes conducted at the Philippine General Hospital.

The study found that 53 percent of COVID-19 outcomes resulted in death, 34 percent led to intensive care unit admission, and 30 percent resulted in respiratory failure, Macaballug added.

This is why the group urges diabetic patients to get vaccinated and receive their booster shots, Montano said.

"Ang lagi po naming paalala ang katatapos lang po ay COVID pero ang diabetes di po natatapos," she said.

(Our constant reminder is this may be the end of COVID but diabetes never ends.)