Aggressive Diabetes Treatments Don’t Work for Seniors

Many seniors that have been diagnosed with diabetes may have been put risk because of doctors trying to help them strictly regulate their blood sugar levels. A new study made this argument after finding that roughly 66% of older diabetic adults that aren’t in good health have been placed on diabetes management regimens. These practices typically have the goal of targeting hemoglobin A1C levels.

 

However, the end results are that these patients are not gaining more control over their diabetes but are instead being put at risk of developing hypoglycemia. The results also indicated that after more than a decade, the number of seniors with diabetes that were also in poor overall health did not change. Even after receiving many years of aggressive treatments for managing blood sugar levels, the statistics did not change.

 

The findings were able to show that tight blood sugar regulation could actually cause older people harm because they are more likely to develop hypoglycemia. The study researchers made these assessments after analyzing 2001-2010 data on over 1,200 diabetes patients over the age of 65. The patients were separated into three groups based on health condition. Roughly 20 percent of the group was in extremely poor health. Over the course of the study the number of people with poor health did not change.

 

Researchers suggest that older individuals who are diabetic probably should not receive aggressive treatments because they are not making any difference. In particular treatments, such as insulin, does not have any affect on the patient and may actually result in increasing the risk of hypoglycemia.

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