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FRIDAY, Sept. 25, 2020 (HealthDay News) — Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is associated with an increased risk for diabetes mellitus (DM) incidence, according to research presented at the annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes, held virtually from Sept. 21 to 25.

Zixing Tian, from the University of Manchester in the United Kingdom, and colleagues conducted a systematic review and meta-analysis to examine the association between RA and DM incidence. Data were included from five articles and two conference abstracts with 1,629,854 participants.

The researchers found that most eligible studies were population-based and one was hospital-based. Publication bias was seen in Egger’s Test (−3.15) but not in Begg’s test (−0.05). The I² test indicated heterogeneity (96 percent). There was an association seen for RA with an increased risk for DM incidence (pooled relative risk, 1.23). On exclusion of the hospital-based study, in a sensitivity analysis, the result did not change (pooled relative risk, 1.23).

“This finding supports the notion that inflammatory pathways are involved in the pathogenesis of diabetes,” the authors write. “We suggest that more intensive screening and management of DM risk factors should be considered in people with RA.”

Abstract No. 271

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