Insulin and Blood Glucose Control

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By: Elka Karl

Although most adults with insulin-treated diabetes usually follow their prescribed insulin regimen, experiencing A1Cs higher than 7% suggests that an individual’s insulin use, regimen or both are inadequate to achieve optimal blood glucose control.

Utilizing the Department of Veterans Affairs regional database, New England researchers evaluated 6,222 diabetics on chronic insulin therapy to predict compliance with insulin regimens.

The study evaluated demographic variables, intensity of diabetes management, A1C levels and pharmacy utilization records.

Insulin use was 77 percent of prescribed amounts, with A1C levels averaging 8%. Oral hypoglycemic agent use was higher than insulin use, but it correlated with insulin use. Race, A1C levels and intensity of diabetes management were significant predictors of insulin use. Age, race and insulin use were significant predictors of A1C levels.

Diabetes Care, January 2005

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