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The Clinical Correlations between Diabetes, Cigarette Smoking and Obesity on Intervertebral Degenerative Disc Disease of the Lumbar Spine.

  • Author(s): Jakoi, Ande M
  • Pannu, Gurpal
  • D'Oro, Anthony
  • Buser, Zorica
  • Pham, Martin H
  • Patel, Neil N
  • Hsieh, Patrick C
  • Liu, John C
  • Acosta, Frank L
  • Hah, Raymond
  • Wang, Jeffrey C
  • et al.
Abstract

Study design

Retrospective analysis of a nationwide private insurance database. Chi-square analysis and linear regression models were utilized for outcome measures.

Purpose

The purpose of this study was to investigate any relationship between lumbar degenerative disc disease, diabetes, obesity and smoking tobacco.

Overview of literature

Diabetes, obesity, and smoking tobacco are comorbid conditions known to individually have effect on degenerative disc disease. Most studies have only been on a small populous scale. No study has yet to investigate the combination of these conditions within a large patient cohort nor have they reviewed the combination of these conditions on degenerative disc disease.

Methods

A retrospective analysis of insurance billing codes within the nationwide Humana insurance database was performed, using PearlDiver software (PearlDiver, Inc., Fort Wayne, IN, USA), to identify trends among patients diagnosed with lumbar disc degenerative disease with and without the associated comorbidities of obesity, diabetes, and/or smoking tobacco. Patients billed for a comorbidity diagnosis on the same patient record as the lumbar disc degenerative disease diagnosis were compared over time to patients billed for lumbar disc degenerative disease without a comorbidity. There were no sources of funding for this manuscript and no conflicts of interest.

Results

The total number and prevalence of patients (per 10,000) within the database diagnosed with lumbar disc degenerative disease increased by 241.4% and 130.3%, respectively. The subsets of patients within this population who were concurrently diagnosed with either obesity, diabetes, tobacco use, or a combination thereof, was significantly higher than patients diagnosed with lumbar disc degenerative disease alone (p <0.05 for all). The number of patients diagnosed with lumbar disc degenerative disease and smoking rose significantly more than patients diagnosed with lumbar disc degenerative disease and either diabetes or obesity (p <0.05). The number of patients diagnosed with lumbar disc degenerative disease, smoking and obesity rose significantly more than the number of patients diagnosed with lumbar disc degenerative disease and any other comorbidity alone or combination of comorbidities (p <0.05).

Conclusions

Diabetes, obesity and cigarette smoking each are significantly associated with an increased diagnosis of lumbar degenerative disc disease. The combination of smoking and obesity had a synergistic effect on increased rates of lumbar degenerative disc disease. Patient education and preventative care is a vital goal in prevention of degenerative disc disease within the general population.

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