Type 2 diabetics with high HbA1c levels are associated with an increased risk of dementia, according to Medscape, reporting findings presented at the European Associate for the Study of Diabetes (ESAAD) 2015 meeting in Stockholm, Sweden. Lead investigator Aidan Rawshani, MD and colleagues found that patients with HbA1c ≥ 10% have a 50% higher risk of being admitted to the hospital due to dementia. The researchers also found patients with very low HbA1c levels had an increased risk for developing dementia as well.

“HbA1c is a modifiable risk factor, and the growing evidence…[of an association]…means we have an opportunity to decrease the risk of developing dementia by optimizing HbA1c,” Dr. Rawshani said.

The observational study of 353,214 patients is the largest of its kind. Researchers emphasized, however, that the study shows an association, and that more research is needed to understand the relationship between hypoglycemia and dementia risk.

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