Communication

English

Vociferous about diabetes

Editor-in-Chief's editorial

Preventing blindness online

Individuals with diabetes are 25 to 30 times more likely to lose their sight from diabetic eye damage (retinopathy), cataracts or glaucoma. The US National Eye Institute reports that almost half of the 16 million people with diabetes in America have at least early signs of diabetic retinopathy. Nearly 700,000 people have serious retinal disease, and as many as 25,000 people go blind from diabetic retinopathy. In light of these statistics, Prevent Blindness America (PBA), the oldest volunteer eye health organization in the United States, has launched a new website, www.diabetes-sight.org.

Setting new directions

President's editorial

Diabetes, fear, and self-loathing: one person's story

When he left home to attend his regular diabetes clinic, Ray Msengana was already feeling unwell. But when he was told that the treatment of his Type 2 diabetes was to change from tablets to insulin therapy, he rapidly felt a lot worse. In this candid account of life with diabetes, Ray Msengana describes the affective impact of the condition, and makes a call for changes in the way diabetes is managed.

A world-wide call to action

The scale of the problem that diabetes poses to world health is still widely under-recognized. The International Diabetes Federation (IDF) estimates that if current trends continue, the number of people with diabetes will almost double; from 194 million people in 2003 to 333 million by the year 2025. Diabetes is already the most costly health-care problem in the westernized and 'westernizing' countries.

Diabetes and cardiovascular disease: double jeopardy

Diabetes is closely associated with cardiovascular diseases (CVD), particularly heart attack, stroke and ischaemia of the lower limbs. People with diabetes are two to four times more likely to develop these diseases compared to people without the condition. Recent evidence, however, tells us that it is possible to prevent or delay these complications. IDF is very aware of the scale of the problem, and has entered the 21st century with the issue high on its agenda. Diabetes and Cardiovascular Disease has been selected as the theme for this year’s World Diabetes Day campaign.

World Diabetes Day 2002: a bird's-eye view

This year the WDD theme of diabetic eye disease (retinopathy) played a more prominent role in the publicity surrounding WDD events than has been the case for previous themes. Diabetes is the world's primary cause of damage to vision and blindness. One of the specific objectives of WDD 2002 was to warn of the threat of irreversible retinopathy posed by the condition. The theme was taken up in order to campaign for improved provision of sight checks as a relatively low-cost method of prevention.

Defining the role of social workers in diabetes care

Talk to anyone with diabetes or their family members about living with such a complex condition and they will tell you about the many physical and psychological issues they continually face. This article highlights some of the principal psychosocial concerns affecting diabetes care and explains how social workers can help people to cope with the challenges and changes which are triggered by diabetes.

The Internet: a tool for advocacy

In the first of a series of articles on the role the internet can play as a tool for advocacy, we take a look at www.idf.org in order to highlight recent changes to our own website, explain how the present content can be exploited, and preview some of the plans we have for future development.

Educating the educators: an International Curriculum for Health Professionals in Diabetes

The lack of trained healthcare professionals and of programmes to train them has been cited by many member associations of the International Diabetes Federation (IDF) as the most critical issue hindering the delivery of high quality diabetes education and care. To address this, the IDF Consultative Section on Diabetes Education set out to write a curriculum that could be used in all IDF member countries. This goal has now been achieved. Read more for an overview of the most remarkable features of this new publication.

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