Physicians Groups Recommend ‘Aggressive’ Treatment for Early-Stage Diabetes
Two physicians groups on Wednesday recommended "aggressive" treatment for newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes patients, the AP/Las Vegas Sun reports. The American College of Endocrinology and the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists recommended treatment to stabilize blood sugar at normal levels as quickly as possible after diagnosis. They also suggested that people who are at a high risk for developing diabetes should be regularly screened starting at age 30.
The groups estimate that one-third of people with diabetes in the United States do not realize that they have the disease. In addition, the groups said that 41 million U.S. residents are believed to have pre-diabetes -- an impaired sugar tolerance -- in addition to more than 20 million who have diabetes. "If we don't get them diagnosed early, we miss an opportunity to prevent complications later in life," Jaime Davidson, a physician at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School, said. The recommendations include the following:
- Glucose levels should be monitored frequently, and blood sugar levels should be kept below 110 before eating and below 140 two hours after eating;
- Daily exercise should be incorporated as part of disease management;
- Patients should have an A1C test, which measures sugar levels in hemoglobin and indicates average blood sugar levels over several months; and
- The goal for healthy sugar levels in diabetics should be 6.5%, which is lower than the 7% recommended by the American Diabetes Association (Schmid, AP/Las Vegas Sun, 2/2).