Sunday December 16, 2018

Diabetes, heart disease together cause early death: Study

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London: People suffering from both diabetes and heart disease are at a greater early death risk than people with just one condition or no disease, a study said.

After analysing more than 135,000 deaths that occurred during prolonged follow-up of almost 1.2 million participants, researchers from the University of Cambridge found that an individual in his/her 60s having both the conditions has an average reduction in life expectancy of about 15 years.

Image credits www.crwf.com
Image credits www.crwf.com

“A combination of diabetes and heart disease is associated with a substantially lower life expectancy,” said Emanuele Di Angelantonio from the department of public health and primary care in a paper that appeared in the journal of the American Medical Association.

At the age of 60 years, men with any two of the conditions would on average have 12 years of reduced life expectancy.

Men with three conditions – diabetes, stroke and heart attack (cardiometabolic diseases) – would have 14 years of reduced life expectancy. For women at the age of 60 years, the corresponding estimates were 13 years and 16 years of reduced life expectancy.

The figures were even more dramatic for patients at a younger age.

At the age of 40 years, men with all three cardio-metabolic conditions would on average have 23 years of reduced life expectancy and for women, the corresponding estimate was 20 years.

“Our results highlight the importance of preventing heart disease and stroke among patients with diabetes, and likewise averting diabetes amongst heart disease patients,” said professor John Danesh, study co-author.

Measures aimed at reducing diabetes and heart disease among this group could have a dramatic impact on their lives, the study said.

(IANS)

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New AI Model by Google Can Help Detect Diabetic Retinopathy

For this purpose, it recently launched the "Google AI Impact Challenge"

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Google's new AI model to help detect diabetic retinopathy. Pixabay

Google has developed an Artificial Intelligence (AI) model that can detect diabetic retinopathy with a level of accuracy on par with human retinal specialists, the technology giant said.

Google is working on “rolling out this diabetic retinopathy initiative in clinics in India with Verily” — an Alphabet-owned company which works on life sciences research and development, Kent Walker, SVP of Global Affairs at Google, wrote in a blog post on Thursday.

More than 400 million people in the world have diabetes. A third of them have diabetic retinopathy — a complication that can cause permanent blindness.

“Using the new assistive technology, doctors and staff can screen more patients in less time, sparing people from blindness through a more timely diagnosis,” Walker said.

While the blindness can be prevented, diabetic retinopathy often goes undetected because people do not always get screenings.

“In major part, this is due to limited access to eye care specialists and staff capable of screening for the disease. This is a problem that AI can help us solve,” Walker said.

“Deploying this technology in underserved communities that don’t have enough eye specialists could be life-changing for many,” Walker added.

Diabetes
Representational image. Pixabay

Google began work on the model in collaboration with eye specialists in India and the US a few years back. They developed an AI system to help doctors analyse images of the back of the eye for signs of diabetic retinopathy.

“The results were promising,” Walker noted, while adding “we should work to make the benefits of AI available to everyone”.

Google has for several years applied AI research and engineering to projects in Asia Pacific with positive societal impact, including stopping illegal fishing in Indonesia, forecasting floods in India, and conserving native bird species in New Zealand, the blog post read.

Also Read- U.S.A: Myanmar’s Military Campaign Against Rohingya Muslims a ‘Mass Genocide’

Besides healthcare, the tech giant also wants to support more Asia Pacific organisations in using AI to help society by engaging with governments, non-profit organisations, universities and businesses.

For this purpose, it recently launched the “Google AI Impact Challenge”.

“Selected organisations who apply to the challenge will receive support from Google’s AI experts and Google.org grant funding from a $25 million pool,” Walker said. (IANS)