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The Benefits Of Good Long-Term Blood Sugar Control

July 6, 2009

University researchers have produced a study showing the importance of good long-term control of blood sugar for diabetics, Reuters reported.

It showed that poor long-term blood sugar control in diabetics was associated with a substantial increase in the risk of dying from ischemic heart disease, which is characterized by restricted blood flow to the arteries of the heart.

But the study showed that with reasonably good blood sugar or “glycemic” control, the risk of death from ischemic heart disease was comparable to that seen in people normal blood sugar levels.

Dr. Ane C. Dale, from the Norwegian University of Science and Technology in Trondheim, told Reuters Health that the new findings showed good glycemic control in persons with newly diagnosed diabetes should be recommended.

Dale said it was also necessary to control other cardiovascular risk factors properly.

The researchers compared death rates from ischemic heart disease in 205 patients newly diagnosed with diabetes and 205 matched subjects without diabetes at the outset throughout a 20-year follow up study.

Diabetic patients had nearly a two-fold greater risk of dying compared to non-diabetic patients, according to the report in the European Heart Journal.

Dale said the mortality risk from ischemic heart disease was four times higher in diabetic subjects with poor long-term blood sugar control compared to the control group, whereas in diabetes patients with “reasonably good” blood sugar control the risk was almost the same as in subjects without diabetes.

The findings are compatible with the hypothesis that good glucose control reduces the risk of coronary complications in patients with diabetes, the report concluded.

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