Intensive Management Lengthens Lifespan in T1DM

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Intensive Management Lengthens Lifespan in T1DM
Intensive Management Lengthens Lifespan in T1DM

(HealthDay News) -- Patients with type 1 diabetes mellitus can reduce their overall risk of premature death by conducting multiple blood glucose tests throughout the day and constantly adjusting insulin levels to hit very specific blood glucose targets. These findings are published in the Jan. 6 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Samuel Dagogo-Jack, M.D., chief of the division of endocrinology, diabetes, and metabolism at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center in Memphis, and colleagues randomly assigned 1,441 people with type 1 diabetes mellitus to either receive intensive management of their diabetes or conventional therapy. People who got intensive therapy kept near-constant tabs on their blood glucose levels, and made quick adjustments to their insulin therapy to achieve glycemia as close to the nondiabetic range as safely possible. The intensive therapy lasted an average of 6.5 years, through the mid-1980s and 1990s. Afterward, patients were taught how to conduct their own intensive management and urged to continue using those techniques. Doctors then tracked their health and progress through the end of 2012.

After an average 27 years of follow-up, the researchers found that the odds of dying were nearly one-third lower for the intensive management group who kept their glucose levels tightly controlled. Strict control of blood glucose appears to be key. Researchers observed a 44 percent reduction in overall risk of death for every 10 percent reduction in a patient's hemoglobin A1c, Dagogo-Jack told HealthDay.

"Across the board, individuals who had better glucose control due to intensive therapy had increased survival," Dagogo-Jack said.

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