This post will illustrate the global prevalence of Diabetes. Prevalence in Bangladesh will also be illustrated along with a comparison.

Global prevalence

Prevalence is the proportion of individual of a population having the disease. According to the IDF (2017), around 424.9 million people (8.8%) worldwide are living with diabetes. Approximately 79% of the diabetic patients live in low- and middle-income countries. It is estimated, the number will increase to 628.6 million (9.9%) by the year 2045 (1). Men have higher prevalence (9.1%) of diabetes comparing with woman (8.4%) (1). It is more prevalent in urban area (279.2 million) compared to rural area (145.7 million) (1). All of these data show, diabetes is prevalent everywhere. 

Local Prevalence [Bangladesh]

Diabetes is emerging as a major health issue in Bangladesh and it has been increasing for the last three decades (1-5). It is estimated, by 2045 Bangladesh will be in the 9th position among the top 10 countries for number of people with diabetes (1). In the rural area of Bangladesh, there is a 7.2% prevalence of diabetes, of which most of them are undiagnosed, don’t take medication (4). Partial explanation of not taking medication is financial burden and/or affordability (6). Along with financial burden, T2D patients in Bangladesh are also suffering from various clinical complications and negative impact on the quality of life (1, 7-14).

Unfortunately, the underlying reason of such high prevalence is not investigated yet. Apart from that, all of these above findings clearly indicate a couple of things; Bangladesh has a high prevalence of diabetes both in urban and rural area, a lot of people are unaware of their disease, it is creating a lot of complications which are costing a significant amount of money, a significant portion of patients are not covered by treatment.


It is important to compare Bangladeshi scenario against global scenario. A comparative disease burden scenario is presented in the following table:

Table 1: Comparative scenario of diabetes
Variables Global Local (Bangladesh) Remarks
Premature death due to diabetes 2.63% of total death.

Annual change is 1.85%

3.71% of total death.

Annual change is 3.43%

Comparing with global data, Bangladesh has higher premature death due to diabetes.
Years life lost (YLD) 3.54% of total year life lost. Annual change is 1.62%. 2.93% of total year life lost. Annual change is 2.05%. YLD is increasing at higher rate in Bangladesh comparing with the global data.
Disability adjusted life year (DALY) 2.39% of total DALY. Annual change is 1.52%. 2.31% of total DALY. Annual change is 1.9%. DALY in Bangladesh is almost similar to global rate, but the higher death rate in Bangladesh tells, Bangladeshi diabetes patients dies early which indicate, there is a huge gap of disease management.
Note: [1] Data presented here is up to 2016

Reference: [2] Source: Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation (IHME). GBD Compare Data Visualization. Seattle, WA: IHME, University of Washington, 2017. Available from (Accessed on 30 August 2018)

Next …

In the next blog you will know about the complications of diabetes.


  1. International Diabetes Federation. IDF Diabetes Atlas 8th Edition. International Diabetes Federation; 2017.
  2. Akter S, Rahman MM, Abe SK, Sultana P. Prevalence of diabetes and prediabetes and their risk factors among Bangladeshi adults: a nationwide survey. BULLETIN OF THE WORLD HEALTH ORGANIZATION. 2014;92(3):204-13.
  3. Biswas T, Islam A, Rawal LB, Islam SMS. Increasing prevalence of diabetes in Bangladesh: a scoping review. Public Health. 2016;138:4-11.
  4. Islam FMA, Chakrabarti R, Islam MT, Wahab M, Lamoureux E, Finger RP, et al. Prediabetes, diagnosed and undiagnosed diabetes, their risk factors and association with knowledge of diabetes in rural Bangladesh: The Bangladesh Population‐based Diabetes and Eye Study. Journal of Diabetes. 2016;8:260-8.
  5. Saquib N, Khanam MA, Saquib J, Anand S, Chertow GM, Barry M, et al. High prevalence of type 2 diabetes among the urban middle class in Bangladesh. BMC PUBLIC HEALTH. 2013;13(1):1032-.
  6. Afroz A, Habib SH, Chowdhury HA, Paul D, Shahjahan M, Hafez MA, et al. Healthcare cost of type 2 diabetes mellitus in Bangladesh: a hospital-based study. International Journal of Diabetes in Developing Countries. 2016;36(2):235-41.
  7. Islam FMA, Bhowmik JL, Islam SZ, Renzaho AMN, Hiller JE. Factors Associated with Disability in Rural Bangladesh: Bangladesh Population-Based Diabetes and Eye Study (BPDES). PLOS ONE. 2016;11(12):e0165625.
  8. Islam SMS, Ferrari U, Seissler J, Niessen L, Lechner A. Association between depression and diabetes amongst adults in Bangladesh: a hospital based case-control study. Journal of Global Health. 2015;5(2):020406-.
  9. Islam SMS, Lechner A, Ferrari U, Froeschl G, Niessen LW, Seissler J, et al. Social and economic impact of diabetics in Bangladesh: protocol for a case-control study. BMC PUBLIC HEALTH. 2013;13:1217.
  10. Islam SMS, Rawal LB, Niessen LW. Prevalence of depression and its associated factors in patients with type 2 diabetes: A cross-sectional study in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Asian Journal of Psychiatry. 2015;17:36-41.
  11. Safita N, Islam SMS, Chow CK, Niessen L, Lechner A, Holle R, et al. The impact of type 2 diabetes on health related quality of life in Bangladesh: results from a matched study comparing treated cases with non-diabetic controls. HEALTH AND QUALITY OF LIFE OUTCOMES. 2016;14(1):129.
  12. Saquib N, Saquib J, Ahmed T, Khanam MA, Cullen MR. Cardiovascular diseases and Type 2 Diabetes in Bangladesh: A systematic review and meta-analysis of studies between 1995 and 2010. BMC PUBLIC HEALTH. 2012;12:434.
  13. Sarker AR, Sultana M. Health and economic burden of diabetes in Bangladesh: Priorities for attention and control. Journal of Diabetes. 2017;9:1118-9.
  14. Islam SMS, Alam DS, Wahiduzzaman M, Niessen LW, Froeschl G, Ferrari U, et al. Clinical characteristics and complications of patients with type 2 diabetes attending an urban hospital in Bangladesh. Diabetes & Metabolic Syndrome: Clinical Research & Reviews. 2014;9(1):7-13.