Medical Journal of Malaysia

MJM, Vol 70 Supplement 1 September 2015

Undiagnosed Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (T2DM) among urban population in Malaysia - findings from the National Health and Morbidity Survey, 2011

Hasimah I, Mohd Azahadi O, Tahir Aris, Muhammad Fadhli MY, GH Tee, Abdul Aiman AG, Nor Azian MZ, Lim KK, Mohd Yusof S

Institute for Public Health, Jalan Bangsar, Kuala Lumpur


Introduction: The prevalence of Type 2 Diabetes Mellitus (T2DM) is increasing around the world. Undiagnosed T2DM may have a major impact on public health problem because these individuals are untreated and at risks of long-term complications. The purpose of the study is to determine the national prevalence of undiagnosed T2DM and to identify the associated risk factors among urban population in Malaysia.

Method: A nationwide cross-sectional study was conducted involving 17,783 respondents. Two stage stratified sampling design was used to select a representative sample of the Malaysian adult population.  Structured validated questionnaires with face-to-face interviews were used to obtain data from the respondents. Respondents who claimed that they were not having diabetes were asked to perform a finger-prick test.

Results: The prevalence of undiagnosed T2DM among urban respondents was 8.7% (n=903). The highest percentage of undiagnosed T2DM among urban respondents was found to be females (10.2%), 55-59 years old (13.5 %), Indians (10.5%), with no formal educational attainment (11.4 %), not working (9.1%), married (10.2%) and smokers (9.9%). Multivariable analyses revealed that gender, age group, ethnic group, obesity and hypertensive were more likely to have undiagnosed T2DM.

Conclusion: This study showed a high prevalence of undiagnosed T2DM in Malaysia. This study also found the fact that established risk factors like obesity, age, gender hypertensive status were associated with undiagnosed diabetes mellitus. Therefore, awareness programs on diabetes must be improved and early diabetic screening is crucial especially among adults aged 30 years and above to prevent more serious complications of this disease.

Keywords: undiagnosed, type 2 DM, prevalence of diabetes, risks factor, Malaysia