Tag Archives: Risk factors


Diabetologia  (Sept 8, 2020) – Insomnia with objective short sleep duration has been associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes in observational studies [2728]. The present MR study found strong and suggestive evidence of a causal association of insomnia and short sleep duration, respectively, with increased risk of type 2 diabetes.


The present study verified several previously reported risk factors and identified novel potential risk factors for type 2 diabetes. Prevention strategies for type 2 diabetes should be considered from multiple perspectives on obesity, mental health, sleep quality, education level, birthweight and smoking.

Read full study


This was a laborious and apparently objective study.

The discovery of insomnia as a unique risk factor is no surprise, and reinforces the restorative IMPORTANCE of SLEEP.

I was surprised to see docosohexanoic and Eicosapentanoic acids in the risk column and LDL in the good column. However they were studying type 2 diabetes, and not vascular health. I will continue to take my fish oil, and enjoy my HDL, which is in the good column.

—Dr. C.


Dizziness, Fainting, Falls, Orthostatic Hypotension, Heart rate and rhythm, Cardiac output and Perfusion, The Autonomic Nervous system,

Falls and Injury are all very interconnected. They all tend to accumulate as we age, but the young are not immune to these conditions. In all of these discussions,

I make the ASUMPTION that you have these conditions in an undramatic, infrequent, moderate way, and are not burdened by Risk factors such as diabetes and hypertension. Stroke is always a worry lingering in the background, and will be discussed at the end of the series.

I will begin with DIZZINESS AND FAINTING. The amazing thing is that we are able to walk upright all day without falling. We can surprisingly lie on our backs, suddenly get up and run away seamlessly, or at least we were able to do these things, most of the time. Our bodies almost magically supply our brains and balance mechanisms with the right amount of blood and nourishment ALMOST all of the time.

Everybody gets dizzy if they spin around enough, and even young people can faint if they stand long enough in one place. Dizziness and fainting is usually considered normal if there is a good explanation. It is when they are too sudden, too severe, last too long, or happen too frequently that we seek medical Help.

Dizziness can mean “lightheadedness” without the room spinning. This is often more concerning than Vertigo, since it more often is due to a lessening of blood flow to the brain. When we get up suddenly from a sitting or lying position, the blood may pool in our abdomen and legs, with consequent insufficient pumping of blood to the brain.

This happens at 1G to civilians, but it takes about 5Gs for young jet pilots to need their “blackout” suits. Instead of blackout suits, we can use support-hose, or even a constricting pants-suit which includes our lower abdomen.

I have also been using a buzzer-timer which reminds me to walk every 10 minutes, to keep me from staying in my comfortable lazy-boy too long. I try to walk rapidly and breathe deeply, and believe this helps keep my body “toned up” and responsive for when I stand up rapidly.

The other way to adapt would be to “baby” my body, and stand up more slowly. There are always the opposite ways to respond: go easy, or push the body and expect it to adapt. If you are worried, your Family Doctor can help you and suggest a path forward .

Perhaps you are overmedicated, need medication, or some tests would help clarify the situation. Vertigo is where the room seems to be spinning. You might be able to tell whether it is spinning clockwise or counterclockwise.

The most common cause is BPPV, or benign periodic positional vertigo, and you can wait it out. Look it up on the internet for parameters. Persistent Vertigo can also be due to inner ear (labyrinth) problems. which an ENT Doctor can address.

For more details, I have included a couple of good articles. A discussion of Falls is next in this series.

–Dr. C.

Reference #1

Reference #2


I have heard the same story over and over. You get older, you trip over your dog or on the edge of a rug, you fall and break your hip, and in treatment or convalescence, you get a pneumonia and die, or at least you get weaker, setting you up for the next fall. Your course is downhill.

The culprit is often OSTEOPOROSIS. Osteoporosis is a disease characterized by loss of bone mass, as opposed to Osteomalacia, discussed in a recent podcast on this site, which is softening of bone The word itself is a MEMONIC for the RISK FACTORS; Then comes WHAT TO DO.

The RISK FACTORS and Prevention Strategies can be remembered in the following mnemonic:

Osteoporosis prevention begins when you are a child, with healthy diet rich in Calcium, and lots of exercise. Your bone mass peaks in the early 20s. While you are young, in your reproductive years, your reproductive hormones, Estrogen and Testosterone protect you.

Women should develop a Preventative strategy during menopause. Being THIN, like i am, is generally a marker of good health, much better than being Fat.

But especially as you get older and Lose muscle mass, Osteoporosis can become a problem, maybe because your bones don’t get the stress required to keep them strong.

BONE DENSITY DECLINES WITH AGE. I get a DEXASCAN as often as my insurance allows, about every 2 years, and am due this summer.

More and more treatments for Osteoporosis are emerging, if your bone loss becomes severe enough.


–Dr. C


Atrial fibrillation is chaotic and irregular atrial arrhythmia, the prevalence of which increases progressively with age. It causes significant morbidity and death. Many patients are asymptomatic or have symptoms that are less specific for cardiac arrhythmias, such as mild dementia or silent strokes. 

Gregory Lip, Price-Evans Chair of Cardiovascular Medicine, University of Liverpool, gives us an overview of the condition.

Read more on Atrial Fibrillation at BMJ