15 June 2016 Volume :4 Issue :27

Articles by UKZN Authors Highly Rated in SA Medical Journal

Articles by UKZN Authors Highly Rated in SA Medical Journal
Professor Colleen Aldous and Dr Somasundram Pillay.

UKZN School of Clinical Medicine authors Dr Somasundram Pillay and Professor Colleen Aldous currently occupy the top three places for frequently read articles in the South African Medical Journal (SAMJ).

The top article, titled, “The Burden of Diabetes Mellitus in KwaZulu-Natal’s Public Sector: A Five-Year perspective”, has 2 233 views for its abstract while the full text has 888 views.

The study aims to describe the burden of Diabetes Mellitus (DM) in the public sector in KwaZulu-Natal. It found that there was a decline in the number of patients initiated on treatment per 100 000 population from 2010 to 2014 inclusive (265.9 v. 197.5 v. 200.7 v. 133.4 v. 148.7).

Defaulter rates for 2013 compared with 2014 were 3.31% v. 1.75%, respectively and amputation rates were 0.09% v. 0.05% for 2013 and 2014, respectively. There was a strong proportional relationship observed between the number of defaulters and number of diabetes-related amputations (r=0.801; p=0.000) (Pearson correlation). A notable percentage of DM patients ranging between 63% and 80% started pharmacological therapy at their local clinics rather than at hospitals in the province.

Second is the study titled: “Introducing a Multifaceted Approach to the Management of Diabetes Mellitus (DM) in Resource-Limited Settings”. It describes the introduction of a multifaceted approach to the management of DM in a resource-limited clinic at Edendale Hospital in Pietermaritzburg. The article has 1 826 abstract views and 527 full text views.

Third is the article titled: “A Deadly Combination - HIV and Diabetes Mellitus: Where Are We Now?” Co-authored with Dr Fazleh Mahomed, it has 1 823 abstract and 394 full text views.

The study aims to establish if there is a difference in blood pressure, lipid and glycaemic control and complications between HIV-infected and uninfected diabetic patients; and to compare characteristics among HIV-infected diabetic patients between those with optimal and sub-optimal glycaemic control.

The authors concluded that, HIV-infected diabetic patients had significantly poorer blood sugar control and a higher incidence of neuropathy and nephropathy (when defined by overt proteinuria). There was a non-significant difference noted between the HIV-infected and uninfected diabetic patients with regard to blood pressure and lipid control. The majority of HIV-infected patients on ARVs failed to achieve target glycaemic control. Obesity remains a global challenge, as noted in both the HIV-infected and uninfected diabetic patients. 

‘Seeing Somasundrum’s papers in the top most read articles gives me joy,’ said Aldous. ‘The recognition is well deserved as his motives are altruistic. He wants his patients to feel better and have better quality of life.’

Aldous is attached to UKZN’s School of Clinical Medicine while Pillay is based at the Department of Internal Medicine at Edendale Hospital.

Mahomed was Head of Internal Medicine at Greys Hospital in Pietermaritzburg but is now at the University of the Free State’s Universitas Hospital.

Nombuso Dlamini


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