Study on why some diabetes patients do not get complications

Thu, 31 Mar 2011
A new study by scientists at the Joslin Diabetes Center in the US has revealed that patients suffering from type 1 diabetes have certain unidentified factors that significantly reduce their risk of developing complications, and which can even stop them from ever happening.

The research, published in the journal Diabetes Care, shows that some diabetes type 1 patients could have a protective mechanism that allows them to avoid the complications generally associated with their condition, such as heart problems, blindness, kidney disease and nerve damage .

They monitored the long-term health of 351 patients, and showed that some had lived without complications from diabetes type 1 for more than 50 years. It was also shown that the majority of the people studied had developed diabetes a long time before strict glycaemic control was possible, or available as part of standard medical care .

George King, lead researcher on the study, commented "If we can identify what constitutes this protective mechanism, we have the potential to induce such protections in others living with diabetes ."

He added "That doesn't mean of course that glycaemic control doesn't help to prevent complications. Numerous other studies have shown that it unquestionably does. In this case, it means only that there is a separate, protective mechanism in play that is not related to glycaemic control that also helps to protect against diabetes-related problems."
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