Research indicates revision is needed for diagnosing Type 2 diabetes
People taking Sitagliptin for diabetes know the diagnosing process all too well.
People taking Sitagliptin for diabetes know the diagnosing process all too well. Testing blood sugar and glucose levels is the norm when it comes to screening for the disease, and the Mayo Clinic suggests that anyone with a body mass index higher than 25 or those who are older than 45 should immediately see their physician for diabetes testing. While this procedure has been implemented for decades, a new study is looking into whether traditional methods are appropriate for effectively diagnosing the disease, as well as if a new standard testing model should be put into place.
Researchers from both The University of Manchester and King's College London have collaborated together to find out if the current testing policies for Type 2 diabetes need to be revised. Type 2 diabetes is the more prevalent form of the disease, accounting for an estimated 90 percent of all adult diabetics. Complications from Type 2 diabetes have been known to lead to heart damage and blood vessel problems in the brain, eyes and kidneys, and finding a new and improved way to quickly diagnose someone with the disease would assist doctors to act faster in implementing a treatment plan.
The current method of diagnosis involves measuring blood glucose levels, which the researchers criticized as not a quick enough means of assessing the disease. Earlier diagnosing can be the difference between finding out whether blood vessels have already been damaged, which is a usual result of late diagnosis for Type 2 diabetes patients.
In this particular study, the researchers primarily focused on young, previously pregnant women, who were all deemed to have ranging risk levels of developing Type-2 diabetes. Instead of simply testing for blood glucose levels, the colleagues examined biochemical markers in the blood prior to glucose becoming elevated, so patients could be inspected before the pre-diabetes stage.
After analyzing their results, the researchers discovered that a fluctuation in types of blood fat metabolites, which are natural particles derived from fat in the blood, seemed to be strong indicators of developing Type 2 diabetes. In addition, these fat metabolite changes were detected long before elevated blood glucose levels, meaning that this method of testing could potentially be quicker at diagnosing the disease.
Dr. Kennedy Cruickshank, a professor at King's College London and lead study author, expressed how amendments need to be made for today's current diabetes testing procedures.
"We found that several groups of fat metabolites, also linked to body fat, were changed in the blood, as were others including some amino acids and to some extent vitamin D, before glucose levels increased," Cruickshank said in a statement. "The current method of categorizing Type 2 diabetes solely by a patient's glucose level means that many will already have suffered blood vessel damage and will experience poorer outcomes."
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