HEADLINE: WHAT ABOUT INSULIN?
ANCHOR LEAD: PEOPLE WITH DIABETES SHOULD CONSIDER INSULIN USE EARLIER, ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
With more reports emerging on the dangers of oral medications for type 2 diabetes, Christopher Saudek, a diabetes expert at Johns Hopkins, says most people should consider insulin use earlier.
SAUDEK: We do use insulin too late. There’s a very good way to know if diabetes is under good control and that’s to measure the hemoglobin a1c. If that’s under 7, maybe under 6.5, then diabetes is in good control, but if it’s above those levels then we ought to be treating the diabetes more vigorously. That may include the new pills, that may include starting insulin. I would start insulin when the pills are no longer effective but I would like to not wait six months or a year or two years with poor diabetic control because that’s when you get the complications. :32
Saudek says once the learning curve has been surmounted, most people don’t find insulin use onerous and do experience better glucose control. I’m Elizabeth Tracey reporting.