KNOWLEDGE AND AWARENESS REGARDING DIABETES MELLITUS IN URBAN SLUM OF MEERUT
Background: Diabetes was described more than 2000 years ago. For the past 250 years, it has featured in the history of medicine. Since the discovery of insulin, work on diabetes at both cellular and clinical levels has expanded. The worldwide prevalence of diabetes mellitus has risen dramatically in the developing countries over the past two decades. India with the highest absolute number of cases has become the diabetic capital of the world. Research question: What is the level of knowledge and awareness among adults regarding diabetes mellitus ? Objective: To study the level of knowledge and awareness regarding diabetes in adults of urban slum in Meerut. Study Design: Cross-sectional, Community-based study. Settings and Participants: Adults belonging to families of urban slum area of Multan nagar which also happens to be the field practice area of Department of Community Medicine, Subharti Medical College, Meerut. Sample Size: 400 young people aged above 25years, 220 respondents were males and 180 were females. Study Period: Feb 2011 to July 2011 Study Variables: A pre- designed, pre-tested, questionnaire was used after taking verbal consent. Questions consisted of age, sex, knowledge and awareness of diabetes i.e. whether ever heard of diabetes, causes, signs and symptoms, mode of diagnosis, complications, risk factors, mode of treatment, source of information regarding diabetes. Statistical Analysis: Data was entered and analyzed in MS Excel. For Socio-economic status, Modified Kuppuswamy classification was used. Results: 75% of the respondents had heard of diabetes. Half of the respondents were aware that it is a sugar disease. 35% of the respondents had the misconception that sugar (table sugar) is a risk factor for diabetes. 90% of the respondents were not having any knowledge of signs or symptoms of diabetes. Friends and relatives were the highest sources of information followed by doctors. Conclusion: Knowledge and awareness among adults regarding diabetes was found to be low in urban slum population. Targeted approach and more intensified campaigns are needed. Community level awareness programmes have to be organized. Extra efforts to be put in health education.