All of us delivering care to people with diabetes know that it's increasingly common, affecting two million people in the UK,according to figures for 2007.It is also expensive,taking up about 10% of NHS costs and 5% of social costs. We also know it's the commonest cause of non-traumatic lower limb amputations and that's just one of the reasons that we spend so much time in clinics optimising care and detecting complications.But how well do we understand the impact of foot disease and how organised are we in assessing and treating it?
There are several blood tests that can be used to measure blood sugar levels, including random blood sugar, fasting blood sugar, glycosylated haemoglobin (HbA1C) and the glucose tolerance test (GTT). This article provides a 'whistle-stop' tour updating you on what information each of these tests provides, what test to use when and how to explain the procedures and results to your patients.
People with diabetes used to be advised to watch their carbohydrate – particularly sugar – intake. But dietary recommendations have developed over the past few years so that they are now similar to the healthy diet that we should all be eating. Are there any remaining differences in what we should be telling patients with diabetes about their diet? Fewer than you might think. In this article we take a 'supermarket tour' that explains what patients with diabetes should be putting in their trolleys and what they should be leaving on the shelves.
People with diabetes need to plan carefully for holidays, especially if they are treated with insulin. Although much of the advice will be the same as for the general population, these patients are more vulnerable and will need to take particular care in looking after themselves to avoid any ill health while away from home.
Many people with type 2 diabetes are overweight or obese at diagnosis and continue to struggle to control their weight. This article looks at why people with diabetes find weight control more of a challenge than the rest of us and how practice nurses can help patients to remain positive, particularly when starting insulin to optimise blood glucose control.
Diabetes UK have launched a new self-management education programme to help people understand more about diabetes and how to manage it effectively. New online research from the charity in the UK has revealed a worrying lack of knowledge of the disease. The new Learning Zone aims to provide tailored and easy-to-understand advice that has been clinically approved and grounded in the latest medical research.