Patient Access to Research

Patient Informs logoPicture of a couple looking at the computerpatientINFORM is a program that provides patients with access to research on the diagnosis and treatment of specific diseases.

Select a topic below to view digests of late-breaking research published in respected medical journals on diabetes and related conditions. These digests are intended to help you understand the latest research. The information provided is not a substitute for advice from your doctor or other health care provider.

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 Most recently published digests:

April 20, 2015
Poor Metabolic Health, But Not Obesity, Is Linked to Early Heart Disease in Mexican Americans
This study suggests that overall metabolic health has a greater effect than body weight on the development of heart and blood vessel disease in Mexican Americans. Helping all Mexican Americans improve their metabolic health may be a more important goal than helping those who are obese to lose weight.

April 20, 2015
Scale Based on 6-Month Glucose Change Predicts the Development of Type 1 Diabetes in People at High Risk
Using the PS6M scale may hasten research into type 1 diabetes prevention by shortening the follow-up time and reducing the number of participants needed to yield meaningful study results. This would allow researchers to test possible preventive therapies more quickly. Also, the higher PS6M scale scores found for people with multiple autoantibodies, low C-peptide levels, and high DPT-1 Risk Score values mean that the PS6M scale can also help researchers learn how each of these factors influences glucose levels as high-risk patients progress toward type 1 diabetes.

April 20, 2015
Study Provides Insight Into Pregnancy Problems and Their Prevention in Women With Diabetes
Women with diabetes are less likely to have problems with their second pregnancy than with their first. However, those who have problems with a first pregnancy have about an equal chance of having problems again during a second pregnancy. Health care providers should encourage all women with diabetes to prepare well—and especially to maintain good glucose control— before becoming pregnant. More intensive support may be needed in the period immediately after a problem first pregnancy to allow enough time for improvement before a second pregnancy occurs.

March 17, 2015
Eyes on the Prize: Studying the Frequency of Eye Exams for Patients With Differing Retinopathy Risks
This study supports the possibility of putting people with diabetes into different risk categories based on the degree of retinopathy they have and safely recommending less or more frequent eye exams accordingly. Under such a plan, people with low risk could get an eye exam perhaps every 2 years, whereas those with high risk could have exams twice yearly, and those with moderate risk could get annual exams. Such a plan could reduce the burden on patients and save on health care costs.

March 17, 2015
Making Breakfast the Biggest Meal May Help Control Glucose All Day
Eating the largest meal of the day at breakfast and the smallest at dinner may help people with type 2 diabetes to better control their blood glucose. Although this study focused on short-term effects, routinely following such a diet could lower A1C and reduce the risk of heart and blood vessel diseases and other complications.

March 15, 2015
Are Children With Type 1 Diabetes at Increased Risk for Mental Illness?
Children with type 1 diabetes are at high risk for mental health problems. The finding that those born earlier had a higher risk than those born later suggests that advances in diabetes care that allow for more flexible lifestyles and eating habits have helped to reduce this risk. Because siblings of children with type 1 diabetes have mental illnesses at about the same rate as the general population, the higher risk for those with diabetes seems to stem from having the disease rather than from genetic factors or their family environment. This study highlights the need for thorough mental health screening of children with type 1 diabetes, especially those who have been recently diagnosed.

February 12, 2015
Peel, Stick, Check: Glucose-Sensing "Tattoo" Could One Day Replace Finger-Prick Testing
With more work, products such as the glucose-sensing tattoo could do away with the need for finger-prick blood testing for many people with diabetes.

February 12, 2015
Take Heart: Study Finds No Higher Risk of Heart Failure From Incretin-Based Diabetes Medicines
The results of this study provide some reassurance of the heart safety of incretin-based medicines for diabetes. However, they will need to be replicated in other large studies.

February 12, 2015
Many Older Veterans With Diabetes and Dementia May Have Tighter Glucose Control Than Is Safe
Many older veterans with diabetes and dementia are at high risk for hypoglycemia associated with intense glucose control. More than half of this population has tight control even though a more relaxed level of control is recommended. Of those with tight control, three-fourths take medicines that have a high risk of hypoglycemia. These individuals may be candidates for a less-intense glucose control regimen to increase their safety.

January 28, 2015
Cell Service: Gene Therapy Causes β-Cell Growth and Reversal of Type 1 Diabetes in Mice
This type of research, while still in an early stage, suggests that new approaches to curing type 1 diabetes through gene therapy may be possible in the future.


The structured summary format used by patientINFORM was developed by the Annals of Internal Medicine, which regularly includes patient summaries of research articles.


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