HealthDay News — Most older adults with prediabetes remained stable or reverted back to normal blood sugar levels during a 12-year follow-up period, according to a study published online June 4 in the Journal of Internal Medicine.

Ying Shang, from the Karolinska Institutet in Stockholm, and colleagues used data from the Swedish National Study on Aging and Care-Kungsholmen to follow 2575 diabetes-free participants (aged ≥60 years) for up to 12 years to assess prognostic factors related to prediabetes outcomes. Diabetes was diagnosed by medical examination, antidiabetic drug use, medical records, or glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) ≥6.5%.

The researchers report that at baseline, more than one-third of individuals (36%) had prediabetes. During the study period, 22% of those with prediabetes reverted to normoglycemia, 13% developed diabetes, and 23% died. Rates for all 3 outcomes of reversion, progression, and mortality trended higher in the first 6-year follow-up period than in the second 6-year follow-up period. Factors associated with return to normoglycemia included lower systolic blood pressure, absence of heart diseases, and weight loss, while obesity accelerated progression to diabetes.

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“The results of our study suggest that even in old age, reverting back from prediabetes to a normal blood sugar level is possible with effective weight management and blood pressure control,” Shang said in a statement.

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