Many hidradenitis suppurativa (HS) patients may have undiagnosed diabetes and pre-diabetes, according to results of a study published in The Journal of Investigative Dermatology.

Studies have found HS to be strongly associated with type 2 diabetes, but the effect of diabetes screening of HS patients regardless of age or body mass index (BMI) has not yet been determined, the researchers noted. To assess the utility of screening with hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) in the detection of undiagnosed dysglycemia, data from 250 patients (79.2% women) were analyzed. Patients older than 12 years of age who were receiving HS treatment were included. Dysglycemia was defined as 5.7-6.4 mg/dL HbA1c and 100-125 mg/dL fasting blood glucose.

A total of 21% of patients had HbA1c screen results that indicated dysglycemia and 3.5% had HbA1 screen results within the diabetic range. Older age was found to be associated with prior diabetes diagnoses (P <.001) and abnormal screening (P =.003).

Limitations to this study include its small cohort from a subspeciality clinic within a single institution. Future studies with a larger cohort are warranted.


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The results of this study indicated to the investigators that routine screenings of HS patients for dysglycemia and diabetes, irrespective of age or BMI, may be warranted and may lead to earlier diagnosis.

Reference

Ahmad S, Riddle AO, Sayed CJ. Outcomes of routine diabetes screening for patients with hidradenitis suppurativa. [published online September 7, 2020]. J Invest Dermatol. doi:10.1016/j.jid.2020.08.016