Dating with Diabetes-Related Erectile Dysfunction

May 12th, 2011

According to the National Institutes of Health, having diabetes more than doubles the risk of a man experiencing erectile dysfunction, or ED. Between 20 and 75% of men with diabetes experience ED, compared to about one in every five men without a chronic health condition. That's because diabetes can cause nerve and artery damage that can make achieving an erection difficult.

ED is a much more common occurrence in the general population than most people realize. ED can be caused by a variety of physical and psychological factors, including stress, low self esteem, disease, surgery, injury, and tobacco, drug and alcohol use. There are over 200 medications that can cause or contribute to ED. Diabetes medications are not among them.

Almost all men will experience ED at some point in their life, especially as they get older. There are now a number of effective treatments for ED, including lifestyle changes, prescription medication, and injections, pumps and pellets. Viagra and similar ED medication are among the top-selling prescription drugs in modern pharmaceutical history.

Impotence is a particular issue for single men who want to date. About.com guide Cory Silverberg posted a straightforward and reassuring article about the challenges of dating for single men with ED. To read Silverberg's article >CLICK HERE.<

Medalists Survive 50 Years without Diabetes Complications

June 10th, 2011

The Joslin Diabetes Center's 50-Year Medal Program honors the accomplishments of those who have survived 50 years or more with diabetes. The Boston-based Center has been following insulin dependent diabetics who have successfully managed their condition over many years.

The Center's 50-year medalists, almost half of which have managed to avoid serious complications such as eye or kidney damage, are being studied in an attempt to determine genetic, physical, psychological and environmental factors that contribute to successful long-term management of the condition.

Years of analyzing data from over 500 long-term diabetes patients have revealed some interesting, and occasionally surprising, information. Perhaps most striking is the fact that almost 70 percent of the medalists still produce some insulin, indicating they may have some defense against beta cell destruction.

Joslin researchers studying the medalists hope to uncover ways to preserve and create insulin-producing beta cells in other insulin dependent diabetics, to develop more effective diabetes medications, or even to find a cure for diabetes.

For some personal survival secrets from two of the medalists who have lived long and healthy lives with diabetes, and some interesting observations on how diabetes control has changed over the years, visit diabeticlifestyle.com.

Diabetes Drug Metformin Safer for the Heart

July 12th, 2011

The type 2 diabetes drug metformin is safer for the heart than other older diabetes medication, according to a two-year study. The findings are important because older patients with diabetes are at particular risk for cardiovascular disease, and because many of them are prescribed a class of diabetes medications called sulfonylureas that may raise this risk.

The controversial diabetes drug Avandia, which has been linked to heart problems, is a sulfonylureas diabetes drug. Sulfonylureas have also been linked to episodes of low blood sugar, and to weight gain.

Sulfonylureas drugs and metformin (also known by the brand name Glucophage) lower blood sugar in different ways. Metformin works by suppressing sugar production in the liver, while sulfonylureas work by increasing insulin production. To read more about the study findings on WebMD, >CLICK HERE.<

Diabetes Videos on WebMD

August 18th, 2011

More and more people are turning to the web for information on health issues, including diabetes. WebMD is one of the most highly respected sources of timely and trusted medical news and information on the web. The site's Health A to Z section includes a comprehensive Diabetes Health Centre sub-section.

Aware that many people prefer to get their information in other ways rather than reading, WebMD has incorporated a number of alternative means of delivering information into their site, including interactive quizzes, tools such as a Food & Fitness Planner, and short documentary-style videos.

The diabetes-related videos feature real people in real life settings - diabetes patients, parents of diabetic children, researchers, and health care professionals. Currently, the site contains sixty diabetes videos on diverse topics, including:

  • Basic diabetes information (type 1 diabetes, type 2 diabetes, pre-diabetes, diabetes diagnosis, diabetes control, diabetes medication-)

  • Diabetes management (diet, foot care, glucose monitoring, A1C testing, hypoglycemia and hyperglycemia-)

  • Diabetes in children (preschool, young children, adolescents-)

  • Insulin delivery methods (insulin pumps, insulin inhalers, islet cells transplant-)

  • Diabetes research and studies (diabetes vaccine, stem cells, investigational diabetes medications, glucose monitoring tattoo, cord blood study-)

  • New diabetes treatments (islet cells transplant, continuous glucose monitors, botox for foot wounds, silicone eye oil for retinopathy-)

  • Alternative diabetes treatment (vinegar for diabetes, antioxidants, hyperbaric oxygen, medicinal properties of kudzu-)

  • Diabetes complications (foot ulcers, diabetic retinopathy, diabetic neuropathy, diabetes and depression, kidney disease-)

Should a topic be of particular interest, every video is surrounded by links to related in-depth information. To view a WebMD Diabetes Health Centre video on a study on the use of vinegar as a diabetes medication >CLICK HERE.<

Is It Safe To Reuse An Insulin Syringe?

September 30th, 2011

Is it safe to reuse an insulin syringe? Bethany from California asked this question of Conditions Expert Dr. Otis Brawley on the health website CNN Health. Dr. Otis' answer reads in part:

"Insulin syringes are expensive, and many patients want to reuse needles to save money. Many also reuse the lancets used to prick the skin and draw blood to measure blood sugar.

You are right that the reuse of insulin syringes and lancets is dangerous. A used needle can have bacteria from the skin in and on it. Bacteria can contaminate the bottle of insulin when reinserted into the bottle. The bottled insulin is a growth medium that can allow the bacteria to reproduce. Insulin is stored in a refrigerator to prevent bacterial growth.

Certain types of bacteria when injected can be especially devastating and can even cause death. In the U.S., several thousand diabetic patients die each year due to bad sterile technique causing abscesses, skin infection and sepsis, which is generalized infection involving the blood.

There are some insulin injection devices that are designed to be reused. Insulin for these devices comes in cartridges with a needle. A new cartridge and needle is used with each dose. The cartridge system is not very useful for the patients who have to mix immediate and long acting insulin at a dose.

All of these risks [of diabetes complications] can be reduced through good blood sugar control, good diet, exercise, and taking diabetes medications properly. Mild diabetes can be controlled through diet and exercise. Moderate disease often requires oral diabetes medications, and more severe Type 2 disease requires oral diabetes medicines and insulin injections."

To read Dr. Otis' answer in its entirety, including sound advice on avoiding diabetes complications, >Click Here.<

Novo Nordisk Files for Approval of Ultra Long Acting Insulin

October 5th, 2011

Insulin

Novo Nordisk today announced the submission to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration of two new drug applications for ultra-long-acting insulin degludec and the co-formulation, insulin degludec/insulin aspart. These insulin analogs have been developed for the treatment of people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes.

"We are very excited about being able to file for the approval of insulin degludec and insulin degludec/insulin aspart now also in the US," said Mads Krogsgaard Thomsen, Executive Vice President and Chief Science Officer at Novo Nordisk. "This is another significant milestone for Novo Nordisk and for the millions of people with diabetes who require insulin injections."

As with the European applications submitted on September 26, the U.S. filings are based on results from the BEGIN and BOOST clinical trial programs, which involved nearly 10,000 type 1 and type 2 diabetes patients. Data from the trials have shown insulin degludec to lower blood glucose levels, while demonstrating a low rate of hypoglycemia, especially at night.

The trials also showed that insulin degludec can be administered once daily at any time of the day with the possibility to change the insulin injection time from day to day according to the needs of the individual patient.

Novo Nordisk intends to make both diabetes medications available in a prefilled insulin delivery device. In the clinical trials, insulin degludec was studied in insulin pens that could either deliver up to 80 units or in a concentrated formulation up to 160 units in a single injection.

Insulin degludec is an ultra-long-acting basal insulin analog discovered and developed by Novo Nordisk. It forms multi-hexamers upon subcutaneous injection, resulting in a soluble depot from which there is a slow, continuous and extended release of insulin degludec. This may contribute to a lowering of blood glucose levels and low rates of hypoglycemia, especially at night.

Insulin degludec/insulin aspart contains the ultra-long-acting basal insulin degludec with a bolus boost of insulin aspart. Insulin degludec/insulin aspart is the first and only soluble insulin co-formulation of ultra-long-acting insulin degludec and insulin aspart providing both fasting and post-prandial control.