Background. Geographic isolation, poverty, and loss of culture/tradition contribute to "epidemic" rates of diabetes amongst indigenous Canadians. The Mobile Diabetes Screening Initiative travels to rural indigenous and other remote communities in Alberta to screen for diabetes and cardiovascular risk. We sought to examine risk factors longitudinally. Methods. Clinical and anthropometric measurements were undertaken for 809 adults (aged 20-91) between November 2003 and December 2009. For those who had more than one MDSi visit, trend estimates (actual changes) were calculated for body mass index (BMI), weight, waist circumference, hemoglobin A1c (A1c), total cholesterol, and blood pressure. Results. Among those without diabetes (N = 629), BMI and weight increased (P < .01) and blood pressure decreased (P < .05). For those with diabetes (N = 180), significant improvements (P < .05) were observed for all indicators except waist circumference. Conclusion. Improvements observed suggest that MDSi's model may effectively mediate some barriers and support subjects in managing their health.
PMID: 22295188 [PubMed]