Very young children suffering from type 1 diabetes are the subject of a new study by the Loyola University Medical Centre in Illinois . The study aimed to establish the effectiveness of insulin pumps for use in preschool-age children. The team concluded that using the continuous subcutaneous pump to deliver insulin is not only safe, but also effective and superior. The news will be well received by many parents of young diabetic children.
Pumps have so far not been widely used by preschool-age children, despite effective use by diabetics of almost all other ages. The study group, whose work is published in the medical journal Paediatrics, suspected the reason for little use in the very young was “presumably because of the fear of hypoglycaemia and concerns that young children are too immature and may meddle with the insulin pump.”
After reviewing data from 33 children, the study team found that after switching from conventional twice-daily insulin injections to insulin pump therapy, the subjects of the study showed significant improvements in blood sugar control. Furthermore, the team found less variation (highs and lows) in blood sugar levels when the children changed to insulin pumps.
One researcher at the head of the study stated: “initiating insulin pump therapy at a very young age may also lead to prevention of long term complications of diabetes.”

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