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Diabetics should have more involvement in treatment decisions

Patients with diabetes should have more say in the treatment and management of their condition, according to new international guidelines published by the European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD) and the American Diabetes Association (ADA).
Launched at this year’s annual EASD meeting in Berli, the guidance recommends that patients be more involved “at the heart” of clinical decisions on type 2 diabetes treatment, including choice of therapy and the setting of treatment goals.
Andrew Boulto, EASD president and professor of medicine at Manchester University, said: “Given the uncertainties in terms of type and sequence of therapies, this approach is particularly appropriate in type 2 diabetes .”
Patient-centered care is defined in the guidelines as “an approach to providing care that is respective and responsive to individual patient preferences, needs and values, ensuring that the patients’ own values guide all clinical decisions.”
It states that diet, exercise and education remain the foundation of type 2 diabetes treatment and that metformin is the best first-line drug . After metformin, however, it says there is limited data to guide treatment .
The guidelines, which appear online in the journal Diabetologia, add that patients “ultimately” have the final decisions on their lifestyle choices and, to some degreen, the drug treatments they use.
Professor Boulton commented: “The overarching goal should be to reduce blood glucose concentrations safely to a range that will substantially minimise long-term complications, but, always keeping in mind the potential adversities with treatment burde, particularly in the elderly who are more often exposed to multiple drug treatments .”

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