CLEVELAND, Ohio (WOIO) - Diabetes is probably the most important risk factor of heart disease, according to a prominent Northeast Ohio medical professional.
Doctor Ian Neeland is the director of University Hospitals Center for Cardiovascular Prevention. He said heart disease is the No. 1 killer in patients with diabetes, a silent killer because many people may not feel the normal symptoms of a heart attack and or chest pain.
″It’s a big problem with death and disability, and the No. 1 leading factor for hospitalization,” Dr. Neeland said.
Type 2 is the most common form of diabetes.
In the last 20 to 30 years, rates of diabetes have increased across the country. Eighty percent of people with diabetes are either unaware they have it, are undiagnosed, or it’s uncontrolled.
Ten percent of Ohioans have diabetes.
“At UH, we are at the cutting edge of diabetes care. We have a multidisciplinary program that includes cardiologists with specialize in diabetes care, in addition to diabetes education and nutritionist and nurse navigators and a host of support and ancillary services,” Dr. Neeland added.
The comprehensive care is part of the hospitals’ Cinema Program. The services also include virtual appointments.
“We have special drugs now available on the market that not only treat the diabetes, but prevent heart disease.”
Preventative care is really the key. Doctors can screen for diabetes during an annual check up.
Doctor Neeland said if you are proactive, mindful of your weight, exercise, and follow a proper diet, it can help with diabetes and prevent heart disease.
“Although diabetes is a lifelong condition, one can reverse diabetes just by lifestyle alone.”