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Young BA, Pugh JA, Maynard C, Reiber G. Diabetes and renal disease in veterans. Diabetes Care. 2004 May 1; 27 Suppl 2:B45-9.
OBJECTIVE: To describe the frequency and sequelae of diabetic renal disease in veterans who receive health care from the Veterans Administration (VA). RESEARCH DESIGN AND METHODS: Veterans with a diagnosis of diabetes, diabetic nephropathy, other kidney diseases, and end-stage renal disease (ESRD) were identified by diagnosis codes from national VA databases for FY1998. Data were obtained and analyzed for prevalence of renal disease, comorbid conditions, and 1-year mortality. RESULTS: A total of 44,671 (10.7%) of the 415,910 veterans with diabetes had a concomitant diagnosis of any renal disease. The average age was 67 years; 98% were male and 60% were white. The prevalence of diabetic nephropathy was 6.0% (n = 25,263). ESRD secondary to diabetes was present in 4.2% (17,636) of subjects. The age-standardized prevalence of diabetes and any renal disease was 72.6/1,000 persons and differed by race (white 76.1/1,000, black 103.4/1,000 persons). Diabetes-associated ESRD prevalence was higher among black versus white veterans and male versus female veterans. One-year age-standardized mortality was 10.7%. CONCLUSIONS: Nephropathy is prevalent in veterans with diabetes. Greater mortality is observed among those with renal disease compared with those without renal disease. Additional surveillance is needed to identify persons likely to progress to diabetic nephropathy and to plan for appropriate and timely health care for these individuals.