Background: The rate of diabetes is on the increase in Nigeria. Rural populace is most unlikely to receive routine medical screening or preventive services, tend to be severally ill when diagnosed and receive less optimum care. Objectives: To determine the incidence of undiagnosed diabetes mellitus among rural population. Methods: This was a cross-sectional study carried out at Iru community (off Abudu-Ogada Road) of Orhionmwon Local Government Area of Edo State. Data was collected using structured questionnaire. Part of World Health Organisation (WHO) stepwise approach for non-communicable diseases surveillance and Type 2 Finnish Diabetes Risk Assessment Form were used for clinical data collection. The respondents’ data on anthropometric, blood glucose and blood pressure measurements, waist circumference and hip ratio were measured using standard criteria’s. Data were analysed with Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) version 20. Results: Less than half of the study participants had positive family history of diabetes (15.0%) and hypertension (25.2%). 23.7% of the rural respondents had incidence of unknown diabetes. Majority of the respondents (70.1%) had a lower risk of (1in 100) to developing diabetes mellitus within 10 years. Age, occupation, level of income per month, family history of diabetes and hypertension, distanced to health care facilities, ever seen doctor within last 12 months, ever had blood pressure measured, physical inactivity’s, BMI and alcohol consumption among study participants were found to be associated with low, slightly elevated and moderate risk to developing diabetes mellitus within 10 years with P-value <0.05. Conclusion: There was poor knowledge of diabetes among rural community residents. Significant incidences of undiagnosed diabetes mellitus have been observed.
Key words: Diabetes mellitus, Incidence, Knowledge, Prevalence, Rural community, Undiagnosed diabetes.