Health and Fitness

Analysis Shows Minorities Less Likely To Receive Cornerstone Diabetes Test

Ethnic and racial minorities bear a disproportionate share of America's diabetes epidemic but are significantly less likely than whites to receive a commonly used test to monitor control of blood glucose, according to Washington State University researchers. In a commentary for the current issue of "The Diabetes Educator, " Assistant Professor of Pharmacotherapy Joshua Jon Neumiller and colleagues document how black and Hispanic patients diagnosed with diabetes are two to three times less likely than white patients to receive the A1C test during physician office visits. The A1C test is a "monitoring cornerstone, " providing a retrospective snapshot of a patient's blood-glucose level, says David A. Sclar, a co-author of the commentary and the Boeing distinguished professor of health policy and administration at WSU. "Ensuring equitable access to care is crucial if we are to reduce the morbidity, mortality and expenditures associated with diabetes, " Neumiller said. The WSU researchers note that diabetes has become a global epidemic projected to affect 48 million Americans by 2050.

Risk For Bone Fractures In Older Women Increased By Diabetes Drug

A Henry Ford Hospital study finds women with type 2 diabetes who take a commonly prescribed class of medications to treat insulin resistance may be at a higher risk for developing bone fractures. After taking a thiazolidinedione (TZD) for one year, women are 50 percent more likely to have a bone fracture than patients not taking TZDs, according to study results. And those at the greatest risk for fractures from TZD use are women older than 65. "Older women are already at a higher risk of osteoporosis and osteoporosis-related fractures, which might explain why they appeared to be the most affected by TZDs, " says study senior author L. Keoki Williams, M.D., MPH, Center for Health Services Research and Department of Internal Medicine at Henry Ford Hospital. The study - one of the largest groups to examine the longitudinal relationship between TZD use and fractures - appears in this month's issue of The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism. TZDs such as pioglitazone and rosiglitazone help keep blood glucose levels on target by decreasing insulin resistance and making body tissues more sensitive to insulin's effects.

International Diabetes Federation Awards US 2 Million To 9 Global Diabetes Research Projects

IDF reinforces its support to translational research in diabetes with the second round of its funding programme, BRIDGES (Bringing Research in Diabetes to Global Environments and Systems). Nine new diabetes research projects will be funded for a total of US$2 million over the next three years as part of the International Diabetes Federation's (IDF) translational research grant programme, BRIDGES. A total of 157 applications were considered for the second round of funding. The chosen projects address important issues in primary and secondary prevention of diabetes in different parts of the world. "BRIDGES is a key programme for IDF's work and mission. The support of translational research projects is critical in a world facing various global health challenges, including diabetes, " said IDF President Jean Claude Mbanya. "Just like the first phase, this round of the programme has a true global impact. The research carried out will have far reaching implications in Austria, China, Colombia, Haiti, India, the Philippines, South Africa and the US, " Prof Mbanya added.

It Matters What You Eat After Exercise

Many of the health benefits of aerobic exercise are due to the most recent exercise session (rather than weeks, months and even years of exercise training), and the nature of these benefits can be greatly affected by the food we eat afterwards, according to a study published in the Journal of Applied Physiology ( http://jap.physiology.org ). "Differences in what you eat after exercise produce different effects on the body's metabolism, " said the study's senior author, Jeffrey F. Horowitz of the University of Michigan. This study follows up on several previous studies that demonstrate that many health benefits of exercise are transient: one exercise session produces benefits to the body that taper off, generally within hours or a few days. "Many of the improvements in metabolic health associated with exercise stem largely from the most recent session of exercise, rather than from an increase in 'fitness' per se, " Dr. Horowitz said. "But exercise doesn't occur in a vacuum, and it is very important to look at both the effects of exercise and what you're eating after exercise.

More Than 3,000 Emergency Hospital Admissions A Year For Children With Diabetes, UK

Latest figures reveal that last year there were more than 3, 300 cases of children in England admitted to accident and emergency departments with DKA. Diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) occurs when blood glucose levels are high (hyperglycaemia) and causes nausea, vomiting, stomach pain, rapid breathing and, if left untreated, may lead to coma. DKA requires urgent hospital treatment. Rise in hospital admissions Children and young people under 18 accounted for around a quarter of the 13, 465 emergency admissions for DKA during the 12-month period from April 2008 to March 2009. In addition, the numbers of DKA hospital admissions have risen steadily in recent years, with an increase of almost nine per cent since 2006. The UK has the fourth highest incidence of Type 1 diabetes in children (25 per 100, 000 a year) in Europe and the lowest number of children attaining good diabetes control. Diabetes UK is concerned that in many cases DKA occurs because Type 1 diabetes is not diagnosed early enough.

Increase In Obesity-Related Hospital Admissions, UK

The number of people admitted to hospital because they are obese increased by almost 60 per cent last year, according to new figures released today by the NHS Information Centre. The survey also shows that the number of people having weight-loss surgery rose by 55 per cent. Latest figures There were 5, 020 admissions with a primary diagnosis of obesity in 2007/08 in England but this rose to 7, 990 in 2008/09. The findings also reveal a rise in the number of people undergoing weight-loss surgery, such as stomach stapling or having a gastric band fitted, and show that there was an increase between 2006/07 and 2008/09, from 1, 950 procedures to 4, 220. Worrying trend "It is worrying that more and more people are being diagnosed as being overweight or obese and end up in hospital because of their condition, " said Libby Dowling, Care Advisor at Diabetes UK. Being overweight puts you at risk "Being overweight makes you more at risk of developing Type 2 diabetes, which in turn can lead to serious complications such as heart disease, stroke, kidney disease, blindness and amputation.

In New Data Alli Proven To Reduce Visceral Fat, A Dangerous Fat Linked To Many Life-Threatening Diseases

New studies show that overweight and obese people using alli® (orlistat 60 mg) with a reduced calorie, lower-fat diet can significantly reduce weight, visceral fat, and waist circumference and therefore may reduce their risk of type 2 diabetes, hypertension, heart disease and stroke .1, 2 The studies were presented at the 1st International Congress on Abdominal Obesity in Hong Kong. alli is the only FDA-approved OTC weight loss aid that is clinically proven to boost weight loss by 50 percent and significantly reduce excess visceral fat.3 Working in the digestive tract, alli prevents about 25 percent of the fat that a person eats from being absorbed.3 Visceral fat is a dangerous type of fat that surrounds the vital organs in the abdomen and when present in excess disrupts the normal functioning of organs, increasing the risk of life-threatening diseases.4-12 Even modest weight loss can result in significant reductions in visceral fat and substantially improve health.14-17 In fact, when losing weight, visceral fat is among the first fat lost, which is associated with noticeable health benefits such as reductions in total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL).

Possible 'Artificial Pancreas' For Children With Diabetes

Scientists in Cambridge have shown that an 'artificial pancreas' can be used to regulate blood glucose in children with Type 1 diabetes. A trial found that combining a real-time sensor measuring glucose levels with a pump that delivers insulin can boost overnight blood glucose control. The Lancet study showed the device significantly cuts the risk of blood glucose levels dropping dangerously low. In total, 17 children and teenagers with Type 1 diabetes took part in the study over 54 nights in hospital. Insulin dose based on real-time readings System lets blood glucose monitor 'speak' to insulin pump Individually, the glucose monitoring system and the insulin pump used in the study are both already widely used and commercially available. But in order to turn them into a 'closed loop' system, which monitors the patient's condition and delivers treatment accordingly, the researchers developed a sophisticated algorithm to calculate the appropriate amount of insulin to deliver based on the real-time glucose readings.

Artificial Pancreas Trials Show Benefits For Kids, Teenagers With Diabetes

In a landmark study in children and teenagers with type 1 diabetes, JDRF-funded researchers at the University of Cambridge showed that using a first-generation artificial pancreas system overnight can lower the risk of low blood sugar emergencies while sleeping, and at the same time improve diabetes control. The trials tested the safety and effectiveness of a first-generation artificial pancreas system used overnight in a hospital setting with participants between 5 and 18 years of age with type 1 diabetes. The system combined commercially available blood glucose sensors and insulin pumps, controlled by a sophisticated computer program that determined insulin dosage based on blood glucose levels while the participants slept. Maintaining recommended blood sugar levels overnight is a major issue for people with type 1 diabetes and particularly for the families of children with diabetes because of the possibility of blood glucose dropping dangerously low during sleep and going unnoticed, which can lead to seizures, coma, and in some cases be fatal.

Number Of Americans In Excellent Or Good Health Has Declined

The New York Times reports on health in the U.S. "The percentage of people who reported having excellent or very good health declined to 66.6 percent in the 2009 period, from 69.1 percent in 1998. Americans report that they have been exercising more. Nevertheless, more than a quarter were obese in 2009 (with a body mass index of 30 or more), up from 19.5 percent in 1997." The report also looks at the prevalence of Type-2 diabetes, alcohol consumption, HIV, flu and asthma and finds that "almost 15 percent of Americans had no health insurance and no regular place to go for medical care" (Bakalar, 1/25). This information was reprinted from kaiserhealthnews.org with kind permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. You can view the entire Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report, search the archives and sign up for email delivery at kaiserhealthnews.org. © Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. All rights reserved.

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