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U. S. Army Aviation Epidemiology Data Registry: Army Aviators with Diabetes Mellitus and Impaired Glucose Tolerance
ARMY AEROMEDICAL RESEARCH LAB FORT RUCKER AL
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The U.S. Army Aviation Epidemiology Data Register AEDR was queried for Army aviators with the finding of glycosuria, hyperglycemia, impaired glucose tolerance IGT, diabetes mellitus DM, use of oral hypoglycemic agents, or use of insulin for the period 1988 to 1992. The paper reviewed the literature pertaining to aircrew with diabetes, listed the aeromedical concerns related to flying duties and diabetes, and listed factors affecting the incidence and prevalence of diabetes mellitus in Army aviators. The study tabulated the incidence and age-specific annual rates of diabetes mellitus and impaired glucose tolerance, and tabulated the distribution and reasons for aeromedical dispositions of aircrew with these conditions. U.S. Army aeromedical planners can expect about 21 new cases of DM and IGT each year. Aviators over 35 years of age were at the greatest risk. About 78.4 percent of the aviators with DM and about 10.9 percent of the aviators with IGT will not be fit for flying duties. This was primarily due to an inability to gain dietary control of their condition or the discovery of other significant medical conditions, such as coronary artery disease. A cost-benefit and case-finding analysis of trained aviators stratified by age showed that screening for DM and IGT would be more effective if started at 35 years of age.
APPROVED FOR PUBLIC RELEASE