A multidisciplinary team of SMU researchers is working with Parkland Health and Hospital to create a statistical model to predict which patients are at risk for developing diabetes five to 10 years before they exhibit symptoms.
Diabetes and pre-diabetes affect an astonishing 43 percent of the country’s population at a cost of $237 billion in treatment and $90 billion per year in indirect costs such as absenteeism. The U.S. spends more treating diabetes than the entire GDP of Portugal.
The earlier the disease is caught, the more likely treatment costs will be kept down. But testing is expensive and time consuming, so providers need to be wise about who they test. Usually, the patients who receive a diabetes test already have a symptom, meaning the chances of reversal are low and treatment costs are more likely to be high.