Where frailty meets diabetes
Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences
Diabetes/metabolism research and reviews. - Chichester
, p. 261-267
University of Antwerp
Diabetes is a chronic illness that has an effect on multiple organ systems. Frailty is a state of increased vulnerability to stressors and a limited capacity to maintain homeostasis. It is a multidimensional concept and a dynamic condition that can improve or worsen over time. Frailty is either physical or psychological or a combination of these two components. Sarcopenia, which is the age-related loss of skeletal muscle mass and strength, is the main attributor to the physical form of frailty. Although the pathophysiology of diabetes is commonly focused on impaired insulin secretion, overload of gluconeogenesis and insulin resistance, newer insights broaden this etiologic horizon. Immunologic factors that create a chronic state of low-grade inflammation - inflammaging' - have an influence on both the ageing process and diabetes. Persons with diabetes mellitus already tend to have an accelerated ageing process that places them at greater risk for developing frailty at an earlier age. The development of frailty - and sarcopenia - is multifactorial and includes nutritional, physical and hormonal elements; these elements are interlinked with those of diabetes. A lower muscle mass will lead to poorer glycaemic control through lower muscle glucose uptake. This leads to higher insulin secretion and insulin resistance, which is the stepping stone for diabetes itself. Copyright (c) 2016 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.