Diabetes congress opens in Cameroon

The third African Diabetes Congress opened Wednesday in the Cameroonian capital Yaoundé.

According to the organisers, it will run till Saturday.

The organisers described the meeting as “a perfect opportunity” for the African diabetes community to “cross-fertilise and also mingle” with international renowned experts on the disease.

The Yaoundé meeting will be putting together “an exciting scientific programme” of the most recent diabetes evidence and best practice for the improvement in care, treatment and prevention, according its organisers..

Were undiagnosed

Diabetes is a growing health concern in sub-Saharan Africa, with experts saying over two-thirds of the people currently living with the disease on the continent were undiagnosed; being the highest worldwide.

The African Diabetes Congress estimates that the prevalence of both diabetes and impaired glucose tolerance were expected to double over the next 25 years.

In Cameroon, for instance, statistics show that about six per cent of the population were affected by the disease.

Adult deaths

Dr Eugene Sobngwi, a senior lecturer in Epidemiology and Consultant Endocrinologist at Yaoundé Central Hospital, said Type Two diabetes, which was mainly found in adults, was the most common in the country.

“Diabetes increases the risk of cardiovascular diseases,” Dr Sogngwi said.

The International Diabetes Federation reported that diabetes caused more than 6,500 adult deaths in 2013 in Cameroon.

According to the African Diabetes Congress, it was imperative that the afflicted community comes together to generate home-grown solutions for the prevention, detection and management of the disease.

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