Australian diabetics improving blood sugar control

Thu, 30 Aug 2012
Type 2 diabetes sufferers in Australia are managing their blood glucose levels better and living longer than 20 years ago, according to new research.

Newly released findings from a 20-year analysis of Australians living with type 2 diabetes shows that patients treated between 2008 and 2011 had lower average blood glucose levels and fasting serum glucose levels than those treated between 1993 and 1996.

Those treated from 2008-2011 also had lower average levels of low density lipoprotein (LDL or 'bad') cholesterol (2.3mmol/L compared to an average of 3.3mmol/L for patients treated in the mid-90s).

However, there was an increase in average body mass index (BMI), indicating that an increasing number of type 2 diabetics are failing to maintain a healthy weight.

Professor Tim Davis, Head of the Fremantle Diabetes Study, said the findings suggest that the benefits of detecting and diagnosing diabetes at an early stage are starting to pay off.

"This is the first Australian research to show that blood sugar control is improving in patients with type 2 diabetes.

"Diabetes patients are now living longer and this suggests that they are suffering fewer heart attacks and strokes."

He added: "Unfortunately, our data also reveals that the average body mass index for a person with diabetes is now in the obese category.

"Medical care is improving, but the implication is that lifestyle factors continue to let patients down."
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