Home diabetes regimens partially explain the increased risk of having a hypoglycemia event during hospitalization among older African-American men with diabetes, according to a study published in the April issue of Clinical Diabetes.
Adline Ghazi, M.D., from the Medstar Good Samaritan Hospital in Baltimore, and colleagues used an automated research tool that searched electronic clinical data to identify all adults with type 2 diabetes 65 years of age and older admitted to medical or surgical wards between January 2006 and December 2009 (650 patients; 52.6 percent white and 47.4 percent African-American). Hypoglycemia was defined as blood glucose <70 mg/dL.
The researchers found the incidence of one or more hypoglycemic events during hospitalization to be 28.61 percent for the entire cohort and 32.79 percent among African-American patients. In unadjusted analysis, hypoglycemia occurred significantly more often in patients who were ≥75 years; African-American; and had higher admission white blood cell count, lower admission glomerular filtration rate, medical history of cognitive impairment, end-stage renal disease, and peripheral vascular disease. There was a significant association between being on insulin therapy without concurrent oral hypoglycemic agents at home with having one or more hypoglycemic events in the hospital.
“In hospitalized adults ≥65 years of age showed that African-American men, but not women, are at a 2.5 to 3 times higher risk of hypoglycemic events during hospitalization,” the authors write.