Prevalence of diabetes mellitus in the Netherlands more than doubled in the period 1999-2014
Objective: To study the trend in the prevalence of diabetes in the Netherlands during the period 1999-2014.
Design: Descriptive study of prevalence.
Methods: The prevalence of diabetes during the period 1999-2014 was calculated on the basis of data from the PHARMO Database Network, a network of electronic databases that includes data from public pharmacies for 3.8 million residents of the Netherlands. A person with diabetes was defined as someone with at least two dispensings for a glucose lowering-drug within six months. Prevalence was adjusted for variation in age demographics per sex to investigate the influence of these variations on population demographics.
Results: The prevalence of diabetes in the Netherlands increased from 1.8% in 1999 to 4.9% in 2014. The increase was more pronounced among men and among persons older than 74 years. Among males 75-84 years of age the prevalence increased from 7.6% in 1999 to 16.5% in 2014. Among females 74-84 years of age this increase was from 8.7% to 16.8%. Only half of the increase was explained by changes in age demographics per sex.
Conclusion: The study showed that the prevalence of diabetes more than doubled during the period 1999-2014. This trend can only be partly explained by changes in age demographics per sex.