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Defeat Diabetes
Foundation
150 153rd Ave,
Suite 300

Madeira Beach, FL 33708
  

Quality of U.S. Diabetes Care is Below Standard!

Posted: Monday, April 01, 2002

The level of care that diabetes patients receive in the United States falls far below current national recommendations, that from the Annals of Internal Medicine. 

The first, the Third U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES III) ran from 1988 to 1994, and the second, from the Behavioral Risk Factors Surveillance System (BRFSS), gathered information in 1995. All the people in the study, 1,026 from NHANES III and 3,059 from BRFSS, were between 18 and 75 years old and had been diagnosed with diabetes.

Diabetes is a serious disease, but most of the complications could be prevented or delayed with the appropriate treatment and interventions.

Diabetes care in the United States can be vastly improved and such improvement, may yield substantial health benefits.

Overall, only about 30% of the respondents had had their hemoglobin A1c, which measures long-term blood sugar control, tested during the previous 12 months and 18% of them had levels greater than 9.5%, indicating that their blood sugar was poorly controlled. Further, only about 4 in 10 respondents said they monitored their blood glucose level at least once every day. 

Roughly one third of respondents reported having poorly controlled blood pressure, about 37% said they did not have annual dilated eye examinations and 45% said they did not undergo annual foot exams.

People with diabetes face a high risk of blindness, which is why they are urged to have eye exams annually. Foot exams are also crucial because people with diabetes can develop sores on their feet that can become infected and ultimately lead to the need for amputation.

"When applied to the estimated 7.9 million persons 18 to 75 years of age in the United States who have diagnosed diabetes, these statistics translated to an estimated.1.4 million persons with hemoglobin A1c levels greater than 9.5%, 2.7 million with uncontrolled blood pressure, 2.9 million without annual dilated eye examinations, and 3.6 million without annual foot examinations.

Source: Annals of Internal Medicine, April, 2002;136:565-574

 
 
 
 
 
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