Undiganosed diabetes figures causing concern in Norwich

General view of Norfolk County Council - County Hall, Norwich

General view of Norfolk County Council - County Hall, Norwich - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2011

Figures have revealed that thousands of people in Norwich have diabetes without realising it, putting their lives at risk.

Diabetes UK estimates that 3,599 undiagnosed diabetics live in Norwich - 42pc of the overall number of people in the area who have the condition.

Risks for those who don't get an early diagnosis include cardiovascular disease, loss of sight and limbs and can even lead to death.

At yesterday's Norfolk Health and Scrutiny committee, Sharon Roberts, eastern regional manager for Diabetes UK, said that diabetes care in Norfolk can be seen as a 'postcode lottery'.

Miss Roberts said: 'In comparison, figures show that just 4pc of people with diabetes in west Norfolk have not been diagnosed, and the highest number is 47pc in Great Yarmouth and Waveney.

'There needs to be more work done in terms of educating people on the condition.'

Councillor Margaret Sommerville, said: 'What concerns me is that we seem to be reactive rather than proactive.

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'Some people don't like to get checks and might see the symptoms as signs of getting older rather than having diabetes.

'It would be good if we could get health checks done in public at places like football matches as well as get Public Health England to help out in terms of educating people about the symptoms.'

Do you have a story about diabetes? Email Kieran.Lynch@archant.co.uk