Canadians need more aggressive diabetes care.
Nearly half of people with adult diabetes aren’t achieving good blood sugar control.
A national study shows Canadians with the adult, or type 2, form of diabetes need more aggressive treatment if they are to prevent more serious complications associated with the disease.
Type 2 diabetes is the most common form of the condition. It occurs when the body doesn’t produce enough insulin or no longer uses it properly. This causes a buildup of sugar in the blood that over time leads to heart disease, kidney disease, vision problems and other complications.
Although family doctors are doing a better job of managing type 2 diabetes, almost half of their patients aren’t getting their blood sugar down low enough, according to the Diabetes In Canada Evaluation (DICE) study. As a result, blood sugar control and complication rates worsen over time.
Part of the problem is doctors are relying too heavily on lifestyle approaches such as exercise and dietary changes, and are taking a less aggressive “step-wise” approach to treating diabetes, says Dr. Stewart Harris, a study co-author and associate professor at the University of Western Ontario in London. “We are kind of relying on the old standbys that are tried and true. They’re not so true, actually”

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