They found that tackling diabetes by picking up all cases would have the largest benefit. NHS England has identified six high-risk conditions that are currently under-diagnosed: high blood pressure, high cholesterol, atrial fibrillation (irregular heart beat), diabetes, high blood glucose and chronic kidney disease.
The analysis, led by Dr Chloe Thomas at the University of Sheffield, showed that finding and treating all patients with those conditions to current care levels could prevent 3.4 million cases of cardiovascular disease (CVD) over a 25-year period.
If all patients were managed optimally, in accordance with NICE guidelines, the figure would be even higher at 5.2 million.
The researchers said: “Substantial cost savings and health benefits would accrue if all individuals with conditions that increase CVD risk could be diagnosed, with detection of
undiagnosed diabetes producing the greatest benefits.