Community Outreach & Events Calendar
Charles Cole Today
• Winter 2012
• Summer 2011
• Spring 2011
• Spring/Summer 2010
• Fall 2009
• Summer 2009
• Spring 2009
• Winter 2009
• Nov/Dec 2008
• Sept/Oct 2008
• July/Aug 2008
• May/June 2008
• Feb 2008
Sign Up to Receive eNews
Cole Memorial Raises Awareness During November American Diabetes Month
November is American Diabetes Month and Cole Memorial is raising awareness about the disease which touches many lives and in ever-increasing numbers. In fact, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that, if current trends continue, 1 in 3 Americans and 9 percent of adults in Pennsylvania will develop the disease this year.
Cole Memorial’s diabetes education staff is urging people to…
TAKE IT SERIOUSLY
Two years ago when Joe Weimer of Roulette started attending diabetes education classes at Cole Memorial, Colleen DeBoer, RN and certified diabetes educator (CDE), made house calls to teach him about carbohydrate counting.
“He wasn’t seeing the benefit of watching his carbs at the time,” said Colleen. “When I’d ask him how he was doing he’d say his numbers were up. So, when I received my insulin pump therapy certification, I thought Joe would be a good candidate for it and told him to speak with his Cole Memorial primary care physician about that treatment option.”
Colleen and the healthcare providers at Cole Memorial know the importance of good blood sugar control and other safeguards to help people with diabetes live long, healthy lives. When a diabetic’s blood glucose level becomes too high it can be both disabling and deadly.
“My A1C went from 12 to a reading of six within a year,” stated Joe. “Before I went on the pump I had a few scary blackouts.”
STUDY THE TOP TWO
“Diabetes shows up in several forms,” said Colleen. “The two most common are called type 1 and type 2.”
For reasons that are unclear, in type 1 diabetes the immune system destroys insulin-producing cells in the pancreas. As a result, the pancreas produces little or no insulin-a hormone that regulates glucose. To survive, people with type 1 diabetes must take insulin daily.
The signs of type 1 diabetes can come on suddenly and be severe. The disease is most often diagnosed in children and young adults. It makes its presence known with symptoms such as frequent urination, constant thirst and blurred vision. There is no known way to prevent this type of diabetes.
In contrast, people with type 2 diabetes can make insulin. But their bodies don't make enough of it, or they don't use it effectively -- a circumstance called insulin resistance.
Type 2 diabetes is far more widespread than type 1. In fact, 7 million Americans have type 2 diabetes but don't realize it, according to estimates from the American Diabetes Association (ADA). That's because its symptoms (which mirror those of type 1 diabetes) develop gradually or don't occur at all. Consequently, experts recommend that everyone 45 or older consider being tested for this disease, which mostly occurs in adults.
If type 2 diabetes is developed, a patient may be able to control the disease with diet and exercise alone. If not, the patient’s doctor may also prescribe diabetes pills and/or insulin.
Type 2 diabetes can often be averted. Studies show that those at high risk for the disease can prevent it altogether-or slow its development-by losing only 5 to 7 percent of their body weight and exercising regularly.
GO BEYOND BLOOD SUGAR
If someone has either type of diabetes, keeping blood sugar in a healthy range is a fundamental part of effective treatment.
“In addition to receiving insulin pump therapy, the information that Colleen gave me to learn more about calories, carbs and fat content in foods helped me a lot,” said Joe. “Like other people, when I’d see something that says sugar-free I thought I could eat a lot of it.”
Colleen reminds people to look at food labels. If something states that it is sugar-free, it still might have many carbohydrates and could be high in saturated fats that can cause heart disease which is especially at a higher risk for diabetics.
That’s why blood sugar is not the only thing that needs close watching. Blood pressure and cholesterol levels do too. This is why managing diabetes means remembering your ABCs:
• A is for the A1C test, which gives you a picture of your average blood sugar control for the past two to three months.
The ADA advises being tested at least twice a year to know if your treatment plan is working. Most people with diabetes should aim for an AlC of 7 percent or 1ess. Ask your doctor what the best target is for you. And remember that the AIC
test is not a substitute for daily blood sugar tests.
• B is for blood pressure, which, if high, raises your risk of heart attack and stroke. For people with diabetes, the goal is to keep blood pressure below 130/80 mm Hg.
• C Is for cholesterol. LDL cholesterol (the bad kind) clogs arteries. So keep it low specifically, below 100 mg/dL of blood. Levels of HDL cholesterol (the good kind) should be above 40 mg/dL in men and above 50 mg/dL in women.
For more information about tests and controlling diabetes, contact your Cole Memorial healthcare provider. Cole Memorial Hospital offers Diabetic Support Group meetings on the second Thursday of each month. For details about the program, call 814-274-5351.