Diabetes mellitus is one of the most common chronic disorders in the population, affecting some 2 million people in the UK. Patients with diabetes (both Type 1 and 2) suffer an array of rheumatic complaints that are wideranging in nature and are often complex in management.

Common rheumatic problems in diabetic patients include the limited joint mobility syndrome, cheiro-arthropathy (up to one-half of the patients), aching and stiffness in joints, carpal tunnel syndrome (up to one-third of patients), rotator cuff problems, adhesive capsulitis of the shoulders, Dupuytren’s contracture, osteopenia, osteoporosis, and rheumatoid arthritis.

Badal Pal, MD, consultant rheumatologist at [removed]Wythenshawe Hospital[/removed], Manchester, UK, has started the one-stop clinic specifically for diabetic patients."There are a whole range of rheumatic problems that occur more frequently in the diabetic population, but there is a lack of awareness of these associations, so patients with these disorders are underdiagnosed and undertreated," he says. "There is a direct link between some of these rheumatic problems and diabetic control as well as other diabetic complications such as eye or kidney problems. With increasing use of statins and similar lipid-lowering agents, drug-induced muscle disorders also need to be recognized in diabetic patients."

At the clinic, patients will receive a full clinical assessment, basic nerve conduction tests, and other investigations for the full assessment of diabetic conditions—plus the opportunity to receive joint and soft tissue injections or other treatments. "This is the ideal scenario for diabetic patients who may have complex and painful conditions and who, up until now, have had to keep returning to various clinics to have their multiple problems addressed," Pal says.

[Source: Medical News Today]