Tokyo: Early signs of Type-2 diabetes can be detected 20 years before diagnosis, according to a new research.

Researchers from Aizawa Hospital in Japan found that increased fasting glucose, higher body mass index (BMI) and impaired insulin sensitivity were detectable 10 years before the diagnosis of diabetes as well as prediabetes.

As the vast majority of people with Type-2 diabetes go through the stage of prediabetes, our findings suggest that elevated metabolic markers for diabetes are detectable more than 20 years before its diagnosis, said Hiroyuki Sagesaka, lead researcher from the varsity.

According to present studies, diabetes can be detected 20 years before its diagnosis unlike the previous research which suggested that risk factors like obesity and elevated fasting glucose may be present up to 10 years before someone is diagnosed with the issue.

In the beginning of the study, 27,392 non-diabetic individuals had a fasting glucose and average blood glucose (HbA1c) measured and were followed until a diagnosis of Type-2 diabetes or prediabetes.

Over the study period, 1,067 new Type-2 diabetes cases were identified. Of the 15,778 individuals with normal blood glucose at the initial health exam, 4,781 developed prediabetes and the same abnormalities, although to a milder degree, that were present at least 10 years before diagnosis of prediabetes, the findings revealed.

Because trials of prevention in people with prediabetes seem to be less successful over long-term follow up, we may need to intervene much earlier than the prediabetes stage to prevent progression to full blown diabetes, Sagesaka said.

The research has important implications given that an estimated 425 million adults (aged 20-79 years) were living with diabetes in 2017, and this is predicted to rise to 629 million by 2045.

The study was presented at European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD) Annual Meeting in Berlin in Germany.