People with diabetes have a 35% higher risk of back pain and a 24% higher risk of neck pain than those without diabetes, according to a review by the University of Sydney.
Their findings, based on meta-analyzes of studies evaluating the relationships between diabetes and the symptoms of back or neck pain, have been published in the journal PLOS ONE.
Most adults experience low back pain during their lifetime and almost half suffer from neck pain at some stage. Diabetes is a growing chronic disease. it is estimated that 382 million people live with type 2 diabetes, the most common form of the disease.
There was not enough evidence in the review to find out the causal relationship between diabetes and back or neck pain, said the senior author of the author, Manuela Ferreira, of the University of Bone Institute and Joint Research. But the conclusions justify further exploration of the union.
"Diabetes and back pain and neck pain seem to be linked in some way. We can not say how, however, these findings suggest that further research on the link is justified, "said Professor Ferreira.
"Type 2 diabetes and back pain have a strong relationship both with obesity and lack of physical activity, so a logical development of this research may be to look at these factors in more detail. Our analysis adds evidence that weight control and physical exercise play a fundamental role in maintaining health. "
The document also found that diabetes drug could affect pain, possibly through its effect on blood glucose levels, and this connection should also be investigated. He also recommended that health professionals should consider screening for unknown diabetes in patients seeking care for neck pain or back pain.
"Neck and back pain, and diabetes, are affecting more and more people. More resources are needed to investigate their interdependence. It may be that changing therapeutic interventions for diabetes could reduce the incidence of back pain and vice versa. "