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Type 2 diabetes



Invokana Drug May be Game Changer for Type 2 Diabetes Patients

  • The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved the first of a new class of drugs to treat Type 2 Diabetes called Invokana.
  • Invokana filters sugar into the kidney as opposed to previous medications which manipulated insulin levels to control blood sugar.
  • Our resident pharmacist Dr. Sarah Kahn says there are some concerns regarding how Invokana will affect the heart. According to Kahn, the current data is inconclusive, so they are conducting a trial called the CANVAS study (Canagliflozin Cardiovascular Assessment Study). Those results won’t be available until 2015. In addition, the FDA is requiring Janssen Pharmaceuticals – Invokana’s manufacturer - to conduct five studies once the drug hits the market.
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Sugar and Salt: The Battle to See Which Kills More of Us

A recent study found a correlation between how high a nation’s sugar consumption is and its type 2 diabetes rate. Now researchers are taking it a grim step further by estimating how many deaths can be directly attributed to sugary drinks.

Researchers at Harvard have linked sugary drinks to the deaths of 25,000 Americans every year and 180,000 deaths worldwide.

“We know that sugar-sweetened beverages are linked to obesity, and that a large number of deaths are caused by obesity-related diseases. But until now, nobody had really put these pieces together,” said Gitanjali Singh, the lead author of the five-year study and a postdoctoral research fellow at the Harvard School of Public Health.

soda and chips

In a not-so-shocking development, The American Beverage Association issued a critical response to the study’s findings.

“It does not show that consuming sugar-sweetened beverages causes chronic diseases such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease or cancer – the real causes of death among the studied subjects,” the industry group said in a written statement. “The researchers make a huge leap when they take beverage intake calculations from around the globe and allege that those beverages are the cause of deaths which the authors themselves acknowledge are due to chronic disease.”
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Three New Type 2 Diabetes Drugs Give Patients More Options

Big news dropped for diabetics this week. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has approved three new medications to help control blood sugar in adults with type 2 diabetes.

The FDA press release specifically stated that these three new treatments – Nesina, Kazana, and Oseni – are to be used with diet and exercise to manage blood sugar. Alogliptin is a new active ingredient found in these treatments.

“These new approvals are what I like to call ‘piggy-back’ drugs. They will reap the rewards of their predecessors like Byetta, Januvia and Victoza,” commented our resident pharmacist, Dr. Sarah G. Khan. She explained that these new drugs give patients more options. For instance, patients could receive discount cards to try the new drugs, it may force insurance companies to prefer the older drugs, or if a patient hasn’t found success with one of those they may with the new drugs.
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The High Cost of Diabetes: $2 Billion per Year While 80 Percent of Cases are Reversible

As the American Diabetes Association encourages us to focus on diabetes this month, it’s important to understand just how prevalent it is in our country and get an idea of what a diabetic lives with on a daily basis. Furthermore, it’s also important to look at the cost of this growing disease and try to understand what can be done to change the upward trend of diagnosis.

The most recent assessment was released in 2011. The American Diabetes Association, The National Institutes of Health, and the Centers for Disease Control completed a comprehensive report describing the impact of diabetes in the United States during 2007. Since the report, the numbers have continued to climb.

The data found that 25.8 million children and adults in the United States have diabetes; or 8.3 percent of the population. These stats do not breakout the difference between the two kinds of diabetes, type I and type II.

More than 230,000 death certificates in 2007 had diabetes listed as the contributing factor for the death. Those who have diabetes are most susceptible to conditions like heart disease, stroke, hypertension, kidney disease, blindness, and amputation.

Nearly $175 billion was spent in 2007 to cover all the costs of diabetes. These expenses included direct medical costs, indirect medical costs, disability, work loss, and premature death. These factors only include the diagnosed cases of the disease. There are millions more people living with the condition yet haven’t been diagnosed, while others are treating the symptoms of pre-diabetes and gestational diabetes. The costs of treating these groups came to about $218 billion in 2007.

So, if we see the staggering costs of this disease, what can be done? First, it’s important to note the major differences between the two types of diabetes. Dr. Josh Umbehr of Altas.MD broke down the differences to the very basic level.
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Alzheimer’s May be Result of Poor Diet; Some Calling it Type 3 Diabetes

There have been many speculations as to the cause of Alzheimer’s disease, the most common form of dementia. Currently, there is no cure for the condition and as it progresses it worsens, often causing memory loss, mood swings, aggression and confusion, and eventually leading to death.

Though Alzheimer’s was formerly thought to be a disease of age, a growing body of research now suggests that it may be a metabolic disease – linking it to poor diet. As reported by the Guardian, scientists have even gone so far as to call it type 3 diabetes.

This news is especially concerning as Alzheimer’s currently affects an estimated 35 million people worldwide, and that number is expected to reach 100 million by 2050. Equally alarming are projected growth rates of type 2 diabetes in the U.S. alone, which are also expected to triple in the next several decades.

These speculations are tied to two potential factors: 1) Alzheimer’s causes a lack of natural insulin in the body, or 2) it causes an impairment of the brain’s ability to respond it. Suspicions of the link continue to rise as those who die from Alzheimer’s are often found to have low insulin levels in the brain. This has led researchers to believe that insulin is produced in the brain as well as in the pancreas, explaining why it could play such a crucial role in neuron signaling and cell growth and lifespan, according to Popsci.
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