The Diabetes Link to Spinal Fractures

More than 30 million people in the United States has type 2 diabetes. This disease is caused by the way your body metabolizes sugar–it either resists the effects of insulin or does not produce enough of it to maintain normal sugar (glucose) levels (MayoClinic). The symptoms of type 2 diabetes include: increased hunger and thirst, tiredness, blurry vision, increase urination and sores that are slow to heal. Untreated type 2 diabetes can lead to kidney damage (which in turn can lead to dialsysi, eye damage, increased risk for heart disease or stroke), neuropathy and gastroparesis.


Who is at risk for type 2 diabetes? There are a host of reasons and potential causes for diabetes, which include being overweight (the main risk factor), how your fat is distributed (more fat stored in the abdomen will put you at higher risk), race, family history, age, prediabetes, inactivity, polycystic ovarian syndrome (MayoClinic).

vertebral fractureAnd now, a recent research review suggests that people with type 2 diabetes are more likely than others to develop vertebral fractures. Research from across 15 studies comprising of 852,705 men and women, found that those type 2 diabetes and vertebral fractures had a higher risk of nonvertebral fractures and mortality than those with either of the two, or those who were not diagnosed with any of them. Further, the research suggested that obese and overweight diabetes patients were at greater risk of fractures ( The study concludes, “Based on our findings, individuals with T2D should be systematically assessed for presence of VFs, and, as in individuals without T2D, their presence constitutes an indication to start osteoporosis treatment for the prevention of future fractures.” More information on the study can be found here.

If you think you are at risk for type 2 diabetes, or you have type 2 diabetes and want to check for spinal fractures, we are here for you. Please contact our office to schedule an appointment at 425-347-8614–our office is located in Everett, bordering Mill Creek and Lynnwood.

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