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Many Primary Care Docs May Miss Prediabetes

Posted 3 days ago by Drugs.com

MONDAY, July 24, 2017 – Most primary care doctors can't identify all 11 risk factors for prediabetes, a small new survey finds. Researchers from Johns Hopkins University said their findings should prompt doctors to learn more about this condition that affects an estimated 86 million adults in the United States and could eventually lead to type 2 diabetes. "We think the findings are a wake-up call for all primary care providers to better recognize the risk factors for prediabetes, which is a major public health issue," said study first author Dr. Eva Tseng in a university news release. She's an assistant professor at Hopkins' School of Medicine. It's estimated that 90 percent of those with prediabetes are unaware that they have the condition, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The American Diabetes Association (ADA) explains that changes in diet, exercise ... Read more

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Blame Diabetes: Rates of 2 Nerve Conditions on the Rise

Posted 6 days ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, July 21, 2017 – Two particular types of nerve damage (neuropathy) have been increasing as more and more people develop diabetes in the United States, an expert says. Autonomic and small fiber neuropathy were once rare conditions. Both occur when small blood vessels supplying the nerves are damaged by diabetes because they don't get enough oxygen and nutrients, said Dr. Divpreet Kaur, a neurologist at Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center. Diabetes is one of the main causes of neuropathy, and about 30 million Americans currently have diabetes, Kaur said. More commonly, people with diabetes have nerve damage that causes numbness in the feet and toes. This is called peripheral neuropathy, according to the American Diabetes Association. Autonomic neuropathy affects involuntary bodily functions such as blood pressure, digestion, sexual function, urination, temperature ... Read more

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Can Fetal Alcohol Damage Be Undone?

Posted 8 days ago by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, July 19, 2017 – Animal research may have yielded a potential treatment for fetal alcohol spectrum disorder in children. Two common medications reversed memory and learning problems in rats exposed to alcohol while in the womb, according to researchers at Northwestern University in Chicago. "We've shown you can interfere after the damage from alcohol is done. That's huge," study senior author Eva Redei said in a university news release. Currently, there is no treatment for fetal alcohol spectrum disorder, added Redei, a professor of psychiatric diseases affecting children and adolescents. In the United States, 1 percent to 5 percent of children are born with fetal alcohol spectrum disorder. The condition is linked with low IQ; learning, memory and behavioral problems; high risk of depression; and heart and other health problems. For 10 days after birth, rat pups that were ... Read more

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More Than 100 Million Americans Have Diabetes or Prediabetes: CDC

Posted 9 days ago by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, July 18, 2017 – More than 100 million U.S. adults have diabetes or prediabetes, health officials say. As of 2015, more than 9 percent of the population – 30.3 million – had diabetes. Another 84.1 million had prediabetes, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Tuesday. People with prediabetes have elevated blood sugar levels, but not so high that they have full-blown diabetes, which requires medication or insulin injections. With exercise and a healthy diet, prediabetics can halve their risk of developing type 2 diabetes, the CDC noted. However, awareness levels remain too low. The new report found that nearly 1 in 4 adults with diabetes didn't even know they had the disease, and less than 12 percent with prediabetes knew they had that condition. If not treated, prediabetes often leads to type 2 diabetes within five years, the CDC said. "More than a ... Read more

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New Diabetes Treatment Teaches Rogue Immune Cells to Behave

Posted 13 days ago by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, July 14, 2017 – A treatment targeting wayward immune cells in people with type 1 or type 2 diabetes may help even years later, a new study finds. For the treatment, researchers take blood from a person with diabetes and separate out the immune system cells (lymphocytes). They briefly expose those cells to stem cells from umbilical cord blood from an unrelated infant. Then they return the lymphocytes to the patient's body. The researchers have dubbed this treatment "stem cell educator therapy," because when exposed to the stem cells, the errant lymphocytes seem to re-learn how they should behave. "Stem cell educator therapy is a safe approach" with long-term effectiveness, said the study's lead author, Dr. Yong Zhao. He's an associate scientist at Hackensack University Medical Center in New Jersey. Type 1 diabetes, an autoimmune disease, occurs when the body's immune system ... Read more

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Exercising Safely With Diabetes

Posted 7 Jul 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, July 7, 2017 – Exercise is a powerful tool for managing diabetes. Doing it safely can be a bit of a challenge, but the extra effort is worth it. Regular exercise has been shown to lower blood sugar levels. Working out uses sugar from your bloodstream to fuel your muscles. It also helps the insulin in your body to work better, according to the American Diabetes Association. Talk to your doctor about which activities are safe for you, what your blood sugar readings should be prior to working out, and what to look for when you test your blood sugar during as well as after exercise. You'll likely be told to always test your blood sugar before working out. If it's too high to exercise safely, wait until it's back under control. If it's too low, eat a small snack to help prevent hypoglycemia – dangerously low blood sugar, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention ... Read more

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Broccoli Extract Shows Promise for Type 2 Diabetes

Posted 14 Jun 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, June 14, 2017 – Your Mom may have been right about broccoli's goodness. A small study hints that a substance in the crunchy veggy may help some with diabetes get better control of their blood sugar. Researchers found that a concentrated extract of the substance, called sulforaphane, helped obese type 2 diabetes patients rein in their stubbornly high blood sugar levels. The caveat, however, is that the study was short-term and small – involving 97 people with diabetes followed for 12 weeks. And the extract was taken in addition to the diabetes drug metformin, not instead of it. Plus, the extract the researchers used was not like the sulforaphane supplements available at your local health food store. "The way that you produce and process the extract is important to keep the sulforaphane intact," said senior researcher Dr. Anders Rosengren, of the University of Gothenburg, in ... Read more

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Can Folks With Type 2 Diabetes Forgo the Finger Stick?

Posted 11 Jun 2017 by Drugs.com

SATURDAY, June 10, 2017 – People with type 2 diabetes who aren't taking insulin don't necessarily need to check their blood sugar levels, a new study contends. Many of these patients use "finger prick" blood sugar monitors, but "testing blood sugar didn't have any impact on their blood sugar," said study author Dr. Laura Young, an assistant professor of medicine at the University of North Carolina. "The best way to control blood sugar is to take your medication the way your doctor asks you to and to take good care of yourself," she said. "The key is really taking your medications." Monitoring might be helpful when starting a new medication or changing doses, Young said. "But if someone is on insulin, they absolutely need to be tested regularly," she said. Insulin predisposes people to have blood sugar that's too low, a condition called hypoglycemia. Hypoglycemia can cause dizziness and ... Read more

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Intensive Treatment Shows Potential Against Type 2 Diabetes

Posted 15 Mar 2017 by Drugs.com

WEDNESDAY, March 15, 2017 – Instead of managing type 2 diabetes as a chronic condition, what if people could beat the disease? That was the thinking behind a small pilot study, which suggested that intensive treatment with oral medicine, insulin, diet and exercise might knock out the disease, at least for several months, in certain patients. Up to 40 percent of patients who were treated experienced complete or partial remission for three months, the study found. "We are now able to possibly reverse diabetes, and that really motivates patients to do their best in terms of losing weight and making sure their sugars are normalized," said lead author Dr. Natalia McInnes. She's an assistant professor of endocrinology and metabolism at McMaster University in Ontario, Canada. However, relatively few participants remained in remission a year later, diabetes experts noted. "Rates of diabetes ... Read more

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Youth With Type 2 Diabetes Often Face Complications

Posted 28 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Feb. 28, 2017 – Young people with type 2 diabetes are much more likely to show signs of complications from the blood sugar disease than those who have type 1 diabetes, a new study shows. While the researchers found that about three in four teens and young adults with type 2 diabetes had at least one complication, only one in three with type 1 diabetes did. Why? "The one big difference in the kids with type 1 and type 2 was obesity. When we controlled the data for obesity, there was no longer an excess of complications for type 2 diabetes," explained lead author Dr. Dana Dabelea. She's a professor of epidemiology and pediatrics at the Colorado School of Public Health, in Aurora. The one bright spot in the findings was that the complications were mostly in the "early or subclinical" stages, Dabelea added. That means there's still time to reverse the damage, she explained. Both ... Read more

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Dentists at the Front Line in Diabetes Epidemic

Posted 23 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 23, 2017 – You'd probably be surprised if your dentist said you might have type 2 diabetes. But new research finds that severe gum disease may be a sign the illness is present and undiagnosed. The study found that nearly one in five people with severe gum disease (periodontitis) had type 2 diabetes and didn't know it. The researchers said these findings suggest that the dentist's office may be a good place for a prediabetes or type 2 diabetes screening. "Be aware that worsened oral health – in particular, periodontitis – can be a sign of an underlying [condition], such as diabetes," said study author Dr. Wijnand Teeuw. He's the chief of the periodontology clinic at the Academic Center for Dentistry Amsterdam in the Netherlands. "Early diagnosis and treatment of both periodontitis and diabetes will benefit the patient by preventing further complications," Teeuw added. ... Read more

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Dealing With Diabetes Distress

Posted 16 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

THURSDAY, Feb. 16, 2017 – People with diabetes have to think about their condition and make treatment decisions constantly – and all that extra work and worry can lead to psychological distress at times. "Diabetes distress" isn't the same as depression, however, diabetes experts note. It's a condition unique to the 24/7 demands that come with diabetes, particularly for people dependent on insulin. "The day you develop diabetes, it's like the universe just handed you a new full-time job that you have to do in addition to whatever else you're doing. It's a special job that has a big impact on the rest of your life. There's no pay and no vacation," said William Polonsky, president of the Behavioral Diabetes Institute in San Diego. Alicia McAuliffe-Fogarty, vice president of lifestyle management at the American Diabetes Association, put it this way: "Diabetes distress is the extra burden ... Read more

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Air Pollution May Raise Risk of Type 2 Diabetes

Posted 10 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

FRIDAY, Feb. 10, 2017 – High levels of air pollution may increase some Hispanic children's risk of type 2 diabetes, a new study suggests. "Exposure to heightened air pollution during childhood increases the risk for Hispanic children to become obese and, independent of that, to also develop type 2 diabetes," said study corresponding author Michael Goran. He is co-director of the University of Southern California's Diabetes and Obesity Research Institute. "Poor air quality appears to be a catalyst for obesity and diabetes in children, but the conditions probably are forged via different pathways," Goran said in a university news release. For the study, researchers followed 314 overweight or obese Hispanic children in Los Angeles County. The children were between 8 and 15 years old when the study started. None had diabetes. By the time children who lived in areas with high levels of air ... Read more

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Many Hospital Workers Are an Unhealthy Lot: Study

Posted 7 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Feb. 7, 2017 – More than three-quarters of workers at six Houston hospitals are overweight or obese, a new study shows. Researchers surveyed 924 employees – mostly technicians and administrators – about their health status and diet. Doctors weren't part of the survey. The results showed that 78 percent were overweight or obese. Fruit and vegetable consumption was generally low in all weight groups. Those who were obese had much higher daily consumption of white potatoes such as french fries, regular-fat foods (versus reduced- or low-fat), sugary beverages and added butter and margarine than those of normal weight. The study also found that 65 percent of respondents had no days of vigorous physical activity. About half had no days with moderate physical activity. Compared to those with normal weight, overweight and obese respondents spent more time doing things such as ... Read more

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Sickle Cell Trait in Blacks Can Skew Diabetes Test Results

Posted 7 Feb 2017 by Drugs.com

TUESDAY, Feb. 7, 2017 – A blood test commonly used to diagnose and treat diabetes may be less accurate in black people who have the sickle cell anemia trait, a new study says. The test is called hemoglobin A1C (HbA1C). An A1C reading of 5.7 or more indicates prediabetes or diabetes; below 5.7 is normal, says the American Diabetes Association. But, the current study found that for blacks with a trait for sickle cell anemia, the A1C test may come back lower than it should. This discrepancy could lead to delays in diagnosis and treatment of diabetes, and it might also affect the management of known diabetes. When the researchers compared the results of A1C tests to other measures that check blood sugar levels, they showed that when A1C readings were expected to be 6 percent, they only registered 5.7 percent for blacks with sickle cell trait. "We want to make clinicians aware that things ... Read more

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