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40% of diabetic patients initially decline insulin therapy: All you need to know about this disease

Older adults and those already taking other diabetes medications were more likely to decline insulin therapy.

The researchers noted that delaying insulin therapy could have severe health consequences and shorten a person's life span.

More than 40 percent of people with type 2 diabetes initially turn down their doctor's recommendation of insulin therapy, reveals a new research.

People who delayed insulin therapy had worse glycemic control, and it took them longer to reach healthier blood sugar levels.

Older adults and those already taking other diabetes medications were more likely to decline insulin therapy.

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Researchers at the Brigham and Women's Hospital published their finding in Diabetic Medicine. The researchers noted that delaying insulin therapy could have severe health consequences and shorten a person's life span.

Type 2 diabetes: Risk factors

This is the most common form of diabetes, and accounts for around 90% of all diabetes case. Type 2 diabetes occurs when blood sugar levels rise due to problems with the use or production of insulin. What is insulin? It is a hormone that regulates the movement of blood glucose, or sugar, into cells, which use it as energy.

While type 2 diabetes can appear at any age, it is most common in older adults - age 45 years above. However, the condition is increasingly seen in children, adolescents and younger adults, courtesy obesity, physical inactivity and poor diet.

Several risk factors are associated with type 2 diabetes. These include:

  • Family history of diabetes
  • Overweight
  • Unhealthy diet
  • Physical inactivity
  • Increasing age
  • High blood pressure
  • Ethnicity
  • Impaired glucose tolerance (IGT)*
  • History of gestational diabetes
  • Poor nutrition during pregnancy

Diagnosis and Treatment

Type 2 diabetes can be diagnosed with blood tests that measure blood glucose levels. People with diabetes have blood sugar levels of 126 milligrams per deciliter (mg/dl) or above.

There is no cure for diabetes. A healthy diet, regular physical activity and maintaining a healthy body weight are the key to type 2 diabetes management. Doctors may prescribe oral medication and insulin to help control blood glucose levels.

Doctors recommend regular screening if an individual has other risk factors, such as obesity. Routine screening can help detect the condition in the early stages. Early diagnosis can help slow, stop, or reverse the progress of diabetes.

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