November 14th 2022, is recognised as World Diabetes Day and various organisations use this day to discuss and promote the diagnosis and treatment of the condition.
It is likely that you will encounter diabetes as a secondary condition in patients throughout your career in medicine. Currently, 4.9 million people in the UK have diabetes and Diabetes UK predict this could rise to 5.5 million by 2030. There are also around 13.6 million people at risk of developing Type 2 Diabetes without intervention. The condition can lead to complications in treating patients if they present with other illnesses.
As part of World Diabetes Day, it is a good idea to take a moment to revise your knowledge of both Type 1 and Type 2 Diabetes. With the former, it is good to keep in mind the Four Ts: Thinner, Tired, Thirsty, Toilet as it may help diagnose someone much earlier. Know the risks of Type 2 Diabetes in your patients too, as early diagnosis can be hugely impactful for quality of life in the future.
The World Health Organisation uses November 14th to “raise awareness of diabetes as a global public health issue and what needs to be done, collectively and individually, for better prevention, diagnosis and management of the condition.” This year, their focus is ‘access to diabetes education’. This is both to help individuals look after their own health and also for medical institutions preventing, diagnosing, and treating the condition.
As medical professionals and trainees, you could use this day to better acquaint yourself with the resources and support available to your patients. There is lots of support out there which will benefit both you and them.