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Growing diabetes epidemic: Patient/physician disconnect on disease management

Washington, D.C. Limited understanding of disease progression and frustration with disease management contribute to the clinical challenge of meeting the rising type 2 diabetes epidemic in America, according to the Diabetes Roundtable. The Roundtable, a multidisciplinary group of diabetes experts convened by the American Association of Diabetes Educators (AADE) and the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists (AACE), with support from Merck & Co., Inc., calls for the medical community to take a more collaborative approach to caring for people with type 2 diabetes as a way to improve both disease management and outcomes.

A Harris Interactive (R) survey commissioned by AADE suggests a disconnect between what patients with type 2 diabetes and primary care physicians who treat the disease believe is the state of diabetes management. For example, two-thirds of patients (69 percent) say they feel very knowledgeable or knowledgeable about managing their condition. At the same time, 81 percent of physicians surveyed say they are frustrated with the number of their type 2 diabetes patients who do not follow their treatment regimen exactly as prescribed. The survey also shows gaps in understanding of the disease itself. Half of patients surveyed say they have little or no understanding of their A1C level or in the past six months have not had it checked or are unsure if they have had it checked. A1C is basic lab test for evaluating glucose control, an important aspect of diabetes management.

"We are dealing with some critical information gaps," said S. Sethu K. Reddy, M.D., M.B.A., F.A.C.E., F.A.C.P., chairman and program director of the Department of Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism at The Cleveland Clinic and a member of the Diabetes Roundtable. "Type 2 diabetes is a chronic and complex disease, and for patients to self-manage their condition, it is useful for them to fully understand the basics of the disease and its progression--su
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Contact: Julia Gendler
julia.gendler@porternovelli.com
212-601-8188
Porter Novelli
31-May-2006


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