Institute of Epidemiology & Health Care


Chest pain in people with diabetes

18 October 2017

This study, undertaken by Nikita Berman as part of her iBSc in primary health care, has just been published in BMJ Open.

diabetes   The paper was authored alongside Dr Melvyn Jones, also of PCPH.

Premature death from heart disease with diabetes is a major health problem intentionally.  We know people with diabetes have a higher risk of heart attack and perhaps experience less chest pain (because of the nerve damage caused by this diabetes), but this study showed that people often mistook their symptoms (sweating, nausea and some chest discomfort) as side effects of their diabetic medication. This misattribution often led to delays in seeking care, and receiving lifesaving treatments.

Berman N, Jones MM, De Coster DA 'Just like a normal pain', what do people with diabetes mellitus experience when having a myocardial infarction: a qualitative study recruited from UK hospitals