ANCHOR LEAD: HOW SHOULD INSULIN BE ADDED TO A DIABETES MANAGEMENT STRATEGY? ELIZABETH TRACEY REPORTS
Diabetes control sometimes requires that insulin be added to oral medications to keep blood sugar within acceptable limits, but which type of insulin is best, and when should it be taken? That question was addressed in a study published recently in the New England Journal of Medicine. Sherita Golden, a diabetes expert at Johns Hopkins, says one serious consequence of insulin therapy was seen.
GOLDEN: Really tight glucose control is extremely important in preventing complications but I do think we have to weigh the risks and benefits. So it’s sometimes very difficult to attain the tightest, optimal control because patients may be at risk for hypoglycemia. So we have to balance the risk of chronic complications with the risk of short term complications like hypoglycemia. :20
Hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, can result in confusion, coma, or death, so people who take insulin must be educated about this possibility, especially at the initiation of therapy. I’m Elizabeth Tracey reporting.