Medical News Nuggets



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Here are some snippets of diabetes medical news just to keep you current:

'Nayana' - Mobile Eye Care for Diabetics

November 30, 2008

I have always said it and I will say it again, this is something we need here, a mobile clinic, this time one that focuses on Eye Care. This is something very important for the diabetics. This article also is full of information as to care and treatment so click the link below and it will take you there.

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Diabetes Responsible for Amputations

November 29, 2008

This site reported that diabetes is the cause of over a million amputations in India but there is hope because the country is very active in bringing awareness to this condition. There are approximately 40 million sufferers of diabetes and unfortunately they have only about 22,000 trained physicians. They are going to have this conference in December with a thousand diabetes experts in attendance. It's too bad it's too far away and too expensive for me to go but it would have been lovely to talk to all those experts. Anyway, I'm sure they'll make available the transcripts of that conference and you can be sure I will be first in line.

This is an additional alert not related to above: Diabetes can easily be managed if there is the right information and tools and of course an open mind. Lake Regional is doing just that and has exceeded the standards set by none other than American Diabetes Association. They say that education is part and parcel of every diabetic's plan to live with this condition. They are therefore offering a program of training that includes individual and group classes. For more information, contact Tara Randle at 573-302-2736.

Mobile Diabetes Clinic a Hit

November 28, 2008

This Mobile Diabetes Clinic is a success. Why can’t we have something like this in North America? This will really reverse the trend on the rising diabetes epidemic. People will have an easier time to get tested. Can you imagine how many lives we can save from developing complications this way? So let’s keep on talking how important it is to have a mobile clinic. Sometimes only people who can talk the longest and the loudest can be heard.

Bayer Settles 'Cash for Patients' Allegations for $97.5 Million

November 27, 2008

You can tell from the aforementioned headline that Bayer has settled. If this concerns you, read the whole article by clicking the link below as there may be some cash there for you. In my mind, this is good that this happened because hopefully no one will try to pull wool over our eyes.

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This is an additional alert not related to above: Thank you for the alert on the annual flu shot and the pneumococcal vaccine. I knew that this protects against pneumonia but didn't know it also protects one from blood stream infections and in addition to meningitis which are more dangerous for diabetics. Make sure you have these shots.

Here's another one. There is a free diabetes class planned for those whose blood sugar level is higher than normal. If you are interested pre-registration is required. To register or for more in-formation, call (269) 683-5510, ext. 5465, or visit Lakelandhealth.org. Find out if it is near where you live.

Research Links Poor Glycemic Control and Genetic Variant To Coronary Artery Disease

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November 26, 2008

Harvard Medical School and Joslin Diabetes Center released the findings of their new study. They found that a genetic variant linked with the higher risk of coronary artery disease in people is also associated with an even more increased risk for the diabetics especially if they had poor glucose control.

The Journal of the American Medical Association published this finding in the November 26 issue. This study is the first to find the increased risk in diabetics who have the genetic flaw on chromosome 9p21. The diabetics who have two copies of this plus poor glycemic control have four times increased risk when compared to those who do not have the variant and have good glycemic control.

The main author of this study, Alessandro Doria, M.D., PhD., who is also a Harvard Medical School's Associate Professor and Director of the Genetics Core at the Joslin Diabetes Center said that the leading cause of death in the US is coronary artery disease and diabetes is a main risk for this heart condition. He added that not all diabetics have the same risk because the extent of the damage due to the high glucose appears to be determined by genetics.

Dr. Doria further said that determining the diabetics who have a higher risk will help doctors employ an assortment of interventions to reduce the risk. In addition, this new knowledge could assist with the development of drugs that could help the diabetics.

As mentioned above, the diabetic participants with two copies of the genetic variant and poor glucose control had a four-fold increased risk for coronary artery disease whereas those with better glucose control have a two-fold higher risk. When the variant is not present, there was hardly any increase in the risk.

They found the same findings in a ten-year study with regards to mortality. The finding was that there was a two-fold mortality increase among the diabetics with two copies of the variant and a track record of poor glycemic control.

There is a need for more studies on this issue but the genetic variant of chromosome 9 and poor glycemic control are the two factors that seem to boost each other. Although good glucose control is essential for all diabetics, testing them to see if they have the variant will help the doctors identify those for whom good glucose control is absolutely essential.

Medical News Nuggets

Here are some snippets of diabetes medical news just to keep you current:

Get Off the Path to Diabetes

November 25, 2008

I don’t want to scare anybody but research has shown that long term damage to the body may already be occurring when one is diagnosed with pre-diabetes. But there is good news in the sense that one can delay or prevent diabetes by regular exercise like walking everyday, reducing calories and fat consumption and losing weight. So be careful at Thanksgiving dinner or any other occasion for that matter. They pose danger to the waistline. Me? I will eat half of every serving.


Cubs to Host Clinic on Dec. 28-29

November 24, 2008

I am so excited about this news as they're holding a clinic and then the following day the children will learn how to pitch, catch and hit. And then they will get a free glucose meter. Check out where they're going to have this clinic and if you live around there, it will be great to take the kids there. All diabetic kids can get in free.

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November 23, 2008

Can you imagine what they're saying now? That eating an egg a day can increase one's risk to develop type 2 diabetes to about 60% in men and 77% in women. And if one already has this condition, it can make it worse. In fact, doctors are urging the type 2 diabetics not to consume more than three eggs a week.

Here's another better but unrelated news. Gene testing is no better indication of risk for diabetes than the use of the traditional factors that raise the risk.

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Millions Have Diabetes Without Knowing It, How About You?

November 22, 2008

Let's make this November a real Diabetes Awareness Month. Making sure we do not have diabetes is a must. If you are at risk, get tested and let the rest of the family and your friends know. There is a checklist on this page to see if you are at risk: Scroll down a bit on this page to see if you are at risk to develop diabetes. Often, the symptoms do not appear for as long as ten years and by that time complications may have already set in. It is easier to fight it at the earliest stage.

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Mt. View Student Fights for His Life After Onset of Diabetes

November 21, 2008

This is a sad case where this teen is battling for his life. He just got sick and taken to Lovejoy Health Center in Albion, where the diagnosis was just the flu. But when he got more serious he was taken to the hospital where he remains there with some form of brain injury. Now they know he has diabetes. Let this be a lesson to all of us. If a member of our family gets sick with the flu, check the blood sugar level before it gets worse and does more harm like a brain damage that happened to this boy just because he was suffering from diabetic ketoacidosis. I shot them an email to find out if he had diabetes before, probably not, because the news item specifies onset which means the beginning.

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VINELAND: VHS Student Organize Diabetes Walk

November 20, 2008

Having witnessed the school staff and students joining in the plan to organize A Walk for Diabetes for the American Diabetes Association makes me feel good inside. The walk will start at the Vineland High School North campus on November 26, for three hours starting at 7:30 am. Try to participate if you live around the area.

Study Finds Diabetes Cost Astronomical

November 19, 2008

Every year, the cost is getting sky-high so are we doing something about this? I bet spending half for preventative care will cost less than the $200 billion dollars a year spent for this condition. If we focus on prevention rather than wait for the complications to appear, would this not be better?


XTL Biopharmaceuticals Announced Results For Diabetic Neuropathic Pain and What Else Can One Do

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November 19, 2008

The Phase 2b results of the clinical trial to treat diabetic neuropathic pain are out. The XTL Biopharmaceuticals just announced the top-line findings and they are not encouraging. They were hoping that the new product called Bicifadine would show good results.

The primary purpose of the clinical trial was to find if two doses of Bicifadine would ease the pain linked to diabetic neuropathy. They wanted to compare the results against those who took the placebo to reduce the same type of pain. Here's what they found.

They just announced that their product they were hoping to reduce the pain did not succeed in doing so. In addition, it also failed in the other secondary analysis they made. It is not often to get results like this from pharmaceutical companies so we applaud the XTL Biopharmaceuticals Ltd. for their honesty.

The CEO of the company said they were all disappointed with the findings of the study. They plan to spend some time to analyze the data further so they can decide what the next course of action they will take specifically for this product and for their company as well.

And now what else can one do to ease the pain? Let us deal with how some people dealt with the pain associated with diabetic neuropathy. One person said that he started reversing the condition after seeing an acupuncturist. And he said what he did is something anybody can follow.

Of course he said that consulting with the health care provider is something that is necessary. For one thing one may require a neurological exam or an EMG which is an electromyogram to find out the nature of the problem which really is an essential part of the treatment procedure.

What worked was what one doctor told him. You will be surprised to know what it is. He was told to eat only raw foods and that he would have to be on this type of diet for about six months. After three weeks of eating only raw vegetables, fruits and nuts he started feeling some relief from the pain. Do you think this will work for you too?

Medical News Nuggets

Here are some snippets of diabetes medical news just to keep you current:

Why HIV Treatment Makes Patient Susceptible to Diabetes and Heart Disease

November 18, 2008

It has been common knowledge that those undergoing treatment for HIV have increased risk of developing diabetes. The definite reason was not known until the study conducted by the researchers at the Garvan Institute of Medical Research in Sydney revealed the findings. They were able to find out why the patients became vulnerable to diabetes so their care improved with better management and monitoring. It looks like the HIV patients when undergoing treatment lose a lot of weight but this weight loss was transferred to the abdomen to the point that they were considered obese.

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November 17, 2008

It looks like Nestle backs out of its agreement with Avesthagen to develop nutrition that is specific to a certain condition like diabetes. This project on the diabetes health food was going to be launched by the Swiss company in the global market. The agreement was terminated when the company found a similar product in the research of Novartis Medical Nutrition which Nestle obtained after it had a deal with Avesthagen.

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Local Lab Claims Success in Diabetes Treatment

November 16, 2008

It looks like two refugees from the pharmaceutical company Pfizer believe they have the next blockbuster drug that will treat type 2 diabetes without the side effects. So they decided to do it themselves. They are backed by some investors and have established a small West Michigan company called Metabolic Solutions. They are hoping to go to more clinical trials and are positive the new treatment is going to be a success. The result of the first clinical trial is promising so they are raising millions more for the project.

Court Ruling Is Unfair to Diabetic Schoolchildren

November 15, 2008

Today is such a sad day, not only because it is the day after World Diabetes Day but also we suffered a setback from a Sacramento Superior Court ruling effectively marking a big shift in the treatment of approximately 14,000 California diabetic schoolchildren. I told them to count me in on this fight. I am not normally a fighter but this is different.

Diabetes on the Increase Among Children

November 14, 2008
Watching TV all day long or playing video games while eating potato chips could be behind the increase in diabetes cases among our children. Let us do our best to reverse that trend by becoming good role models for the future citizens of this world. How? By eating healthy and becoming more physically active.

November 13, 2008
Here's an example of how a school district can help their diabetic students. Knowing that they have students developing diabetes at such an early age, they decided to do something about it. They are helping with the study that is now being conducted. Meantime, they are not resting on this action. The girls at a Middle School there are getting more physically active and their school cafeteria is serving more nutritious food. Read the full article by clicking the link below, get it printed if you can and take it to the next PTA meeting so you can present it to the authorities.

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Diabetes Researcher Earns Award

November 12, 2008

Dr. Douglas Melton deserves the award he received from the Massachusetts Society for Medical Research because of his tireless work on stem cells. Because he is the co-director of the Harvard Stem Cell Institute, he is just in the right place to make significant contribution. Hopefully someday soon it will lead to the discovery of a cure for type 1 diabetes. Let's encourage them by giving them a pat on the back so they will continue trying to discover the next diabetes cure.


Queensland University Of Technology Will Save Diabetic Lives

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November 12, 2008

Researchers at the Queensland University of Technology are trying to develop a test for the eyes that will aid in saving not only the limbs but also the lives of people who have diabetes. This is a debilitating condition that happens to up to 50% of diabetics.

They are trying to develop an optical instrument that is able to look at the cornea. What and where is the cornea located? Professor Nathan Efron said that it is the window in the front of the eye. Through this part, the instrument they are developing will be able to evaluate the painful condition called diabetic neuropathy.

There is a test they are now using to determine the condition of the nerves to find the state of the diabetic neuropathy. This current test consists of taking a biopsy of the skin from the foot of the patient. They run tests on this biopsy which can take approximately three days. The eye test the researchers are developing will take the place of the test currently in use.

The team of researchers headed by Professor Efron at the Institute of Health and Biomedical Innovation in Queensland University of Technology is using an equipment called a corneal confocal microscope. With the $5 million funding they received from the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation International, they are authenticating this new diagnostic technique.

How will they validate this new instrument? In Australia and the United Kingdom, they will track 400 diabetics over the span of five years. Professor Efron explained further this disorder called diabetic neuropathy is caused by diabetes. At present there is no treatment that is effective for this condition that is affecting around 50% of diabetics.

Diabetic neuropathy can be a very painful condition with numbness and tingling in the extremities. In advanced cases, it could even lead to death. The use of a corneal confocal microscope can determine this condition in two minutes.

How will this instrument do this? It will help the doctors to look closely at nerves of the eye to determine if there is damage to the nerves. They will then be able to identify if the patient has diabetic neuropathy or not. What is good about this test is that it is not painful and invasive and it can quickly diagnose the condition.

Medical News Nuggets

Here are some snippets of diabetes medical news just to keep you current:

Preventive Therapies for Heart Disease Found Not Effective

November 11, 2008

It looks like there has been a change regarding the effect of Vitamins C and E and aspirin to prevent heart attacks and strokes. The two studies presented at the annual meeting of the American Heart Association are saying so. Apparently, the researchers from Harvard University found the two vitamins did not reduce the risk of a major cardiovascular event.

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Proper Care Can Help Adolescent With Diabetes

November 10, 2008

The impact diabetes on adolescent is unique what with the constant checking of the blood glucose levels. But the article below will show how the adolescent can still have a full and healthy life. The careful management of the condition with the help of the different members of the diabetes health care team will certainly contribute a lot.

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Nibbles: Energy-dense Foods and Diabetes, Obesity Drug Stopped

November 9, 2008

It looks like energy-dense foods that contain more calories may increase one's risk of getting diabetes by 60%. This is according to the researchers from Cambridge, England. They further added that the increased rate due to energy-dense food is in spite of a person's weight and calorie and fat intake. In this article, I particularly like the part about Pfizer halting its research on obesity drug showing that they care more about the people more than their bottom line.

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New Horizons In Type 2 Diabetes Research

November 8, 2008

Although these two approaches are on an experimental basis, still they are on track to be of help, hopefully, someday soon. When Apelin is injected into obese mice their sugar levels dropped significantly. Resveratrol that's found in red wine and grapes is also found to have reduced the blood glucose level.

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UCLA Walk-on Mann Not Put Off by Diabetes

November 7, 2008

What an inspirational story this is! A type 1 diabetic since he was six and now he is playing football for UCLA. His condition did not deter him for pursuing his dream for his passionate love for football kept him on despite having to inject himself during practice and so on. And you know what? He loves candies, too. Find out how he gets around this by clicking the link below.

FDA Rejected Diabetes Drug Study

November 6, 2008
It looks like the Food and Drug Administration did its job by not approving Amylin study. Amylin is a new diabetes drug that can be taken once a week. As a result of the rejection, the value of the stock went down by around 25%. And now the company is also having trouble with its drug called Byetta.

`Hannah Montana` Episode Goes Off Air Due to Diabetes

November 5, 2008
It looks like they cancelled the episode that deals with a friend who has diabetes. I read the whole news item but couldn't find anything objectionable. Perhaps I missed the point so if you check out the whole news by clicking below, let me know what part of the episode is objectionable.

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Researcher Uncovers Significant Piece Of Puzzle On How Insulin Works

November 5, 2008

Garvan Institute of Medical Research in Sydney is the site where a PhD student discovers a significant part of the puzzle on how insulin works. This information is what overwhelmed researchers in their work. Now this finding explains how insulin triggers the muscle and fat cells to take in glucose.

Freddy Yip is the PhD student responsible for this discovery and his report has been published in Cell Metabolism. Professor David James who is chief of the Diabetes Program at Garvan said that since the discovery of insulin in the 1920s, the problem of how insulin works has weighed down the researchers.

Now Freddy Yip reveals an entirely new action of insulin. This newly discovered action of the insulin plays a basic role in the absorption of glucose. This is what is defective in people with type 2 diabetes. This will certainly help the researchers move forward in their work.

In type 2 diabetes there are two procedures involved. One is the inadequate insulin production in the pancreas after a mealtime. The other is insulin resistance which is the defective uptake and storage of glucose in the cells of the fat and muscle.

What Freddie did was focus on the connection between the two processes. He said that there are a series of proteins that can move the molecules around the intracellular pathways. This is where he discovered that a protein known as Myolc is activated by insulin which leads to the uptake of glucose.

This is how the insulin controls the uptake of insulin into the fat cells. Insulin moves the proteins to the surface membrane from inside the cell. This way, the proteins are able to propel the glucose into the cell. This is how the Myo1c helps the process.

After a meal, what moves 80% the glucose to the cell membrane occurs in people who are healthy. The trouble lies in the fact that among type 2 diabetics only 10% of the glucose gets transported to the membrane of the cells.

This new knowledge will provide a strong basis and help in future research. Myo1c was known before to be involved in the transport of the glucose. Now this research shows that it has a major role in the action of insulin. It aids to speed up the movement to the cell membrane.

There may be obstructions between the Mjo1c and insulin among those who are resistant to it. With this in mind, then the possibility of developing new treatments to correct this blockage will be close at hand. Professor James believes this discovery is an important milestone in diabetes research.

Medical News Nuggets

Here are some snippets of diabetes medical news just to keep you current:

Surgery May Be 'Magic Cure' For Diabetes

November 4, 2008
Here's a man who is convinced he has been cured of diabetes. His peak weight was 315 and he had been on insulin for 11 years. He thought he'd end up in a wheel chair so he underwent a Gastric Bypass surgery and now does not have to take insulin anymore and all his ailments are gone.

Artificial Pancreas Would Dial Up Diabetes Control

November 3, 2008

Artificial pancreas? Believe it or not, it's coming. It is still a way off because they have a lot of testing to do but once it is here, it will ease the life of every diabetic. No more spikes, no more such close regimen to follow. Oh, please hurry up and get it done.

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HGB Offers Free Diabetes Forum on Nov. 13

November 2, 2008

It's nice of Hayes Green Beach Memorial Hospital to celebrate the American Diabetes month by having an open house, a diabetes education class and a diabetes support group. both of which will meet monthly.

Diabetes Risk Higher Among Children In Low-Income Families

November 1, 2008

Here's a study that's self-explanatory but low income should not deter anyone from getting help as Medicare may bear the cost. If they say no, don't accept it as a gospel truth. Insist and you may be covered. I know some people who are covered precisely because of this reason.

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