Introduction: Tuberculosis (TB) and diabetes mellitus (DM) are both important health issues, and the association between DM and TB may be the next challenge for global TB control worldwide, type 2 DM (T2DM) responsible for 90% of DM cases. Persons with diabetes have a significantly increased risk of active TB, which is two to three times higher than in persons without diabetes. The aim of this study was to determine the association between pulmonary tuberculosis (PTB) and T2DM among Sudanese patients and also to determine the association between hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) percentage in diabetic patients and development of PTB and effect of duration of T2DM in developing PTB.
Materials and methods: A total of 120 sputum samples were collected from patients during 6 months in Ribat University Hospital, Khartoum, Sudan. Sixty of them were known type 2 diabetic patients categorized as study group and sixty were nondiabetic patients categorized as control group. Ziehl-Neelsen smear preparation and DNA were extracted from sputum for detection of Mycobacterium tuberculosis by polymerase chain reaction (PCR).
Results: Among the 120 sputum specimens, 72 (60%) were males and 48 (40%) were females. Fourteen (19.4%) males and 6 (12.5%) females had PTB, the difference was not statistically significant according to gender P = 0.229. According to treatment modalities, diabetic patients were treated with injectable insulin (36.7%), PCR positive was 4(33.3%) P value (0.853), oral hypoglycemic drugs (51.7%) PCR positive 7 (58.3%) P value (0.849) and dietary control (11.7%) PCR positive (1 (8.3%) P value (1.000) Were insignificant differences. The frequency of HbA1c of 58 patients with diabetes was 24 (41.4%) who had controlled DM (HbA1c level ≤ 6.5%) and 34 (58.6%) had uncontrolled DM. Of the 60 patients with diabetes, 12 had PTB with uncontrolled DM, with significant difference (P=0.000). The mean duration of diabetes mellitus was (6.92 years ± Std 6.801) and the frequency of diabetes mellitus in first 10 years was 47 (78.3%), in (11-20) years was 10 (16.7%) and in (21-30) years was 3 (5%), the PCR positive PTB showed 10(21.3%) for the first 10 years, (11-20) years was 2 (20%) and zero (0.0%) for (21-30) years, P-value (0.480) insignificant different.
Conclusions: In summary, we found consistent evidence for an increased risk of TB among patients with uncontrolled DM (high-level HbA1c).