AlKhatam Nazih A, AlGhamdi Essam A, Taha Attia Z
Abstract: Gastrointestinal autonomic neuropathy is reportedly common in diabetes mellitus. Increased the awareness among physicians toward gastrointestinal symptoms among diabetics is important for improving both diabetic care and quality of life of the affected patient. Objectives: To estimate the prevalence of gastrointestinal symptoms, and to identify the most common gastrointestinal symptoms and its relationship with diabetic factors among adult diabetic patients in Eastern province, Saudi Arabia. Methods: This study was a cross-sectional study of diabetic patients who were being followed Primary health care centers and Hospitals, in Dammam and Qatif areas, Eastern province, Saudi Arabia. The diabetic patients were invited to participate in the questionnaire through interviewing them. Gastrointestinal symptoms were assessed using a validated structured questionnaire which was modified, it divided into two gastrointestinal categories (upper and lower gastrointestinal symptoms) and consisting of 22 individual symptoms. Results: Among the total of 356 diabetic patients (92.7 % response rate), 310 (87 %) had at least one gastrointestinal symptom, 298 (84 %) had at least one upper gastrointestinal symptom, and 239 (67 %) had at least one lower gastrointestinal symptom. Flatulence was the most common upper gastrointestinal symptoms; hard stool & constipation were the most common lower gastrointestinal symptoms. Female patients showed independently risk factor for prevalence of GI symptoms. Among the diabetic factors, the HbA1c >8 %, and long duration of diabetes were significantly related to prevalence of GI symptoms. In addition, type 2 diabetes was a risk factor for lower GI symptoms. Prevalence of gastrointestinal symptoms was more common in patients with retinopathy and autonomic nervous dysfunction.
Keywords: diabetes mellitus, prevalence, digestive, diabetic complications