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Patients with diabetes have a 30% increased risk of developing depression after their diagnosis. Researchers have long attributed the association of these two conditions to shared risk factors, such as sedentary lifestyle and obesity. However, new research suggests that the link is bi-directional: A history of depression is associated with a 60% increased risk for incident type 2 diabetes. Though the cause is unknown, this interplay between diabetes and depression results in psychosocial barriers that can affect patient adherence to diabetic regimens intended to control glucose levels.

Leading translational diabetes researcher Dr Mary de Groot and her colleagues at the Indiana University School of Medicine are investigating the links between diabetes and depression in hopes of uncoupling these debilitating conditions. The team is developing approaches to diabetes management that incorporate mental health care, wellness, and counseling. Their goal is to initiate personalized care plans that meet individual patient needs and empower patients to take responsibility for the management of their disease.

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