Every 10 seconds…
WORDLD DIABETES DAY NOV 14
This silent killer is merciless, writes Dr. Shariq Masoodi.
Every 10 seconds a person dies of diabetes related causes. Within the same 10 seconds two people develop the disease. Each year, this adds to more than three million deaths and more than six million new cases of diabetes. It is a major cause of premature death. In many parts of Africa, life expectancy is reduced to a single year for a person who requires insulin to survive. But, diabetes is a global epidemic with devastating human, social and economic impact.
Today, over 285 million people live with diabetes, which is more 50 million more than the total population of Indonesia, the fourth most populous country in the world after China, India and United States. In a recent study conducted by the Department of Endocrinology at SKIMS it was found that 2.5 percent of adult Kashmiri men and women, aged 20 to 40 years have diabetes with only one out of ten aware of his/her diabetes. In many countries, healthcare budgets fail to provide the essential life saving care that people need. In countries that do provide care, ballooning medical costs may soon overwhelm healthcare budgets. The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) is uniting the world to stop this silent killer and leading the campaign for World’s Diabetes Day.
World Diabetes Day (WDD) engages millions of people worldwide in diabetes advocacy and awareness. World Diabetes Day was created in 1991 by the International Diabetes Federation and the World Health Organization in response to growing concerns about the escalating health threat that diabetes now poses. World Diabetes Day became an official United Nations Day in 2007 with the passage of United Nation Resolution 61/225. The campaign draws attention to issues of paramount importance to the diabetes world and keeps diabetes firmly in the public spotlight. This year sees the first of a five-year campaign that will address the growing need for diabetes education and prevention programmes.
World Diabetes Day (WDD) is a campaign that features a new theme chosen by the IDF each year to address issues facing the global diabetes community. While the themed campaigns last the whole year, the day itself is celebrated on November 14, to mark the birthday of Frederick Banting who, along with Charles Best, first conceived the idea which led to the discovery of insulin in 1922. The ‘Unite for Diabetes’ campaign aims to gather support from governments for United Nations resolution on diabetes in order to raise awareness of the disease, improved diabetes care and encourage action to prevent diabetes. Diabetes is a chronic, potentially debilitating and often fatal disease.
There are two main types of diabetes. People with type 1 diabetes produce very little or no insulin, the disease can affect people of any age but usually occurs in children or young adults. People with this form of diabetes need injections of insulin every day, in order to control the levels of glucose in their blood. If people with type 1 diabetes do not have access to insulin, they die. People with type 2 diabetes can not use the insulin they produce, effectively. The condition is most common in people older than 45 who are overweight. However, as a consequence of increased obesity among the young, it is becoming common in children and young adults. It is possible to control the condition through diet, regular exercise, oral medication and possibly by using insulin.
Both type 1 and type 2 diabetes can lead to severe complication and promote death. Diabetes is responsible for over one million amputations each year. A leg is lost to diabetes every 30 seconds. Diabetes is a major cause of blindness. It is the largest cause of kidney failure in the developed world. People with diabetes are far more likely to develop cardiovascular disease. The yearly death toll form diabetes and its complications is higher than that of AIDS. Bye 2030, the number of people with diabetes is expected to grow to 435 million worldwide. Of these 435 million, 80 percent will live in low and middle income countries.
Diabetes knows no mercy; it hits the developing world hardest. In most low and middle income countries, people living with diabetes bear the brunt of the medical costs out of their own pocket. Individuals and their families fear and experience the disability, reduced quality of life, and the lost years of life that untreated diabetes brings. In many of these countries the burden of diabetes threatens to undermine the benefits of improved standards of living, education and economic growth. Everywhere, awareness of diabetes and its complications is low. The disease is largely hidden or dismissed as just the touch of sugar. But there is no such thing as mild diabetes. If nothing is done, many countries will be unable to cope with the future costs of diabetes care.
Currently, there is no cure for diabetes but most type 2 diabetes can be prevented with changes in diet and increased physical activity. It is possible to reverse the growing diabetes epidemic. To do nothing is not an option. In the future, we may find a way to cure or prevent both type 1 and type 2 diabetes. If we don’t act, our children will bear the future burden of diabetes.
Diabetes Education and Prevention is the World Diabetes Day theme for the period 2009-2013. The campaign slogan for 2009 is "Understand Diabetes and Take Control". Diabetes is difficult. The disease imposes life-long demands on the 285 million people now living with diabetes and their families. People with diabetes must deliver 95% of their own care, so it is of paramount importance that they receive ongoing, high-quality diabetes education that is tailored to their needs and delivered by skilled health professionals. In addition, IDF estimates that over 300 million people worldwide are at risk for type 2 diabetes. Type 2 diabetes can be prevented in the many cases by helping and encouraging those at risk to maintain a healthy weight and take regular exercise. The key messages for everyone are:
■ Know the diabetes risks and know the warning signs
■ Know how to respond to diabetes and who to turn to
■ Know how to manage diabetes and take control
(Adapted from ‘Unite for Diabetes Campaign’ for World Diabetes Day 2009)
(Dr. Shariq Masoodi is Additional Professor, Department of Endocrinology, SKIMS and Organising Secretary, WDD-09 SKIMS. Feedback at: email@example.com)
Lastupdate on : Fri, 13 Nov 2009 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Fri, 13 Nov 2009 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Sat, 14 Nov 2009 00:00:00 IST
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