Urgent warning to anyone who's had Omicron over increased risk of silent killer | The Sun

PEOPLE who have been infected with Omicron could be at an increased risk of a silent killer, scientists have found.

Medics in the US said that those who have had Covid are more likely to develop new-onset type 2 diabetes.

The condition is often referred to as a silent killer, as symptoms can often be disguised as common ailments such as going to the toilet more often or feeling tired.

Millions of people have now had Covid worldwide, and experts at the Smidt Heart Institute at Cedars-Sinai said people were 2.1 per cent more likely to develop type 2 diabetes after catching Covid.

Author of the study, Professor Alan Kwan, cardiovascular physician in the Smidt Heart Institute said: "Our results verify that the risk of developing type 2 diabetes after a Covid-19 infection was not just an early observation but, in fact, a real risk that has, unfortunately, persisted through the Omicron era."

The majority of people in the UK have now also been vaccinated against Covid.

Jabs have been key in the fight against the bug, helping Brits come out of lockdown and protecting the population from serious illness.

And Prof Kwan said that those who are jabbed are also less likely to develop type 2 diabetes.

Medics found that the risk of type 2 diabetes for unjabbed people was 2.7 per cent, with 74 per cent of diagnosis occurring after a Covid infection compared to 26 per cent prior to Covid exposure.

For those jabbed, the risk was just one per cent.

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The results suggest that vaccine prior to infection of Covid could provide protect against diabetes risk, Prof Kwan said.

"Although further studies are needed to validate this hypothesis, we remain steadfast in our belief that Covid-19 vaccination remains an important tool in protecting against Covid-19 and the still-uncertain risks that people may experience during the post-infection period," he said.

Type 2 diabetes can lead to complications such as strokes, heart disease and amputations, and by time people are diagnosed they are often showing signs of complications, Diabetes UK states.

Senior author on the study, Susan Cheng, said Covid could be acting as a 'disease accelerator'.

The symptoms of type 2 diabetes you need to know

Type 2 diabetes is a common condition that causes the level of sugar in the blood to become too high.

Guidance states that many people have the condition without knowing, as symptoms don't always make you feel unwell.

The main symptoms are:

  1. peeing more than usual, particularly at night
  2. feeling thirsty all the time
  3. feeling very tired
  4. losing weight without trying to
  5. itching around your penis or vagina, or repeatedly getting thrush
  6. cuts or wounds taking longer to heal
  7. blurred vision

If you are worried about any of your symptoms then you should see your doctor.

In the event of an emergency, always call 999 or go to your nearest A&E department.

She said the bug could be amplifying risk for a diagnosis that individuals might have otherwise received later in life.

"So, it could be that instead of being diagnosed with diabetes by age 65, a person with pre-existing risk for diabetes might—after a Covid-19 infection—be more likely to develop diabetes by age 45 or 55," Cheng added.

In the UK around 3.8million people have diabetes, with 90 per cent of those having type 2.

Type 1 diabetes means that the body's immune system attacks and destroys the cells that produce insulin.

Type 2 is when the body does not produce enough insulin, or the body's cells do not react to insulin.

The medics said that because diabetes can damage vital organs and blood vessels, those who have it are more at risk of a heart attack and stroke.

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Prof Kwan added that as we learn to live with Covid, we have to learn to treat the conditions associated with its aftereffects.

"Our ultimate goal—with every research study we conduct—is to find ways to keep people healthy and able to engage in their everyday activities and lives," he said.

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