Type 2 diabetes mellitus is strongly related to many kinds of functional impairment, even after adjusting for demographic and comorbid conditions. The current study examined sex differences in the relationships between Type 2 diabetes mellitus and functional impairment in an Asian population sample. Data were obtained from a national survey, the Social Environment and Biomarkers of Aging Study (SEBAS) in Taiwan. A total of 652 older adults aged ≥65 years were included in the study. Pearson's χ2-test and multiple logistic regression analysis were used to examine the relationships between diabetes and functional impairments in older men and women. The reported numbers of impairments were significantly higher in women, in those aged ≥75 years, and in those with diabetes. There were sex and age differences in the relationships between diabetes and functional difficulties. Even after adjustment for age, education, and co-morbid conditions, men with diabetes were about four times more likely to have difficulties related to self-care, and women with diabetes were about two to three times more likely to have difficulties related to higher functioning than their non-diabetic counterparts. Sex differences should be considered when understanding the relationships between diabetes and functional impairments in older adults.
Archives of Gerontology and Geriatrics, 50 (Supplement1) , S6-S10