Study of relationship between WBC count and Diabetic complications

Naredi M., Jhavar D., Krishnan D.


Background: There is plenty of evidence to support the fact that inflammation is a risk factor for atherosclerotic diseases and other lifestyle related diseases like diabetes and obesity. Elevated leukocyte count is associated with insulin resistance and is also associated with macro and micro vascular complications in diabetes. This study aimed to investigate the relation between peripheral total and differential WBC count in diabetes and its complications.

Methods: This was a cross sectional observational study. It was carried out in the outpatient wing of Department of Medicine, M. G. M. Medical College and M.Y. Hospital. A total of 130 consecutive consenting diabetic patients (type 2) were selected. Those with any obvious stressful condition like acute illness were excluded. All the participants were screened for retinopathy, neuropathy, cerebrovascular disease and cardiovascular disease by history and clinical examination and had their height, weight, waist circumference, hip circumference and white blood cell counts noted

Results: In the present study, most of the patients were middle aged patients (46 out of 130 were in age group 51-60 years) and were obese (60/130 had BMI of 26 to 30) with most of them having abdominal obesity (87% males i.e. 48/55 had waist hip ratio >0.90, 56% females i.e. 42/75 had waist hip ratio >0.85). It was found that, amongst 130 patients with type 2 diabetes 56% have WBC counts on the higher side of the normal range i.e. 7000-11000/cu mm. Polymorphs were also on higher side of the normal range in 47% of patients i.e. PMN= 61-70% and 26% had polymorphs above 70%. About 61% patients had monocyte count >6%. Out of the 130 patients, 35 had retinopathy, 57 had neuropathy and 9 had nephropathy as micro vascular complications while as macro vascular complications, 9 had a history of CVA, 14 had CAD and 4 had PVD. Also, maximum patients having micro and macro vascular complications had WBC counts in the range of 7000-11000.

Conclusions: An elevated leukocyte count even within the normal range was associated with chronic complications in type 2 diabetes and can be used to predict development of micro and macro vascular complications in patients diagnosed with type 2 diabetes.


Diabetes complications, Leukocytes

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