On Wednesday, November 14, the World Diabetes Day is scheduled to raise public awareness of this chronic degenerative disease, which is one of the main public health problems in several countries, including Uruguay. In the country, according to the estimates of the Association of Diabetics of Uruguay (ADU), one person is blinded by this disease every day and 80% of cases of diabetes can be prevented. For this reason, experts recommend regular monitoring of blood glucose.
As part of the celebrations today, members of the Uruguayan Diabetes Foundation will conduct a demonstration in front of the Ministry of Public Health at 19.00, where they will demand better access to treatment for diabetics, which would improve the quality of life.
"For 10 years, we have fought for updated diabetes regulations because the one we have fifty years old and discriminating against people suffering from this disease does not provide the best treatment," said Gisel Mondegui, a spokeswoman for the Diabetes Foundation. They are looking for SMEs to support them in their claims for a new law.
"There is now a regulation that a person with diabetes can not pursue a military career, fire or aviation, but it should not be so because diabetics can now do all kinds of activities if they have access to good treatment," said Mondegui.
They also demand that interdisciplinary teams be included in the health care system to educate people with diabetes, especially regarding what needs to be controlled and how to use the treatment "so as not to be complicated," said the spokesperson.
Another claim that will be filed today is access to fair treatment methods. "There are many supplies of diabetes that are not regulated by MSP, and not everyone can get access to them at the same cost, depending on where you serve, the cost you will have: it can be as high as $ 5,000 a month if cheaper – Mondegui explained.
Finally, among their claims is the fact that sugar is taxed at 10% VAT, while a sweetener (a sweetener that can be used by diabetics) has 22%. "We want a tax exemption or at least equal to sugar," he said.
"A fundamental pillar".
Every year, as part of the World Day of Diabetes, a topic related to this disease is revealed. This year's theme will be "Family and diabetes", according to the International Diabetes Federation (IDF).
The password is not arbitrary. The family, according to experts, has a direct and significant impact on the success of prevention of disease and is in turn a fundamental pillar for a person when they are informed that they are suffering from diabetes. In this sense, in the case of families with a member who is already ill, many variables related to the control of diabetes are based on social practices, and thus on family members.
"Chronic degenerative diseases are manifold: there are genetic causes and environmental influences that refer to" lifestyle "as eating habits, exercise and stress management," said food sociology expert Liliana Martínez Lomelí. .
In constructing these habits, the family "plays a very important role," says the expert. That is why this year's slogan refers to the family as the basic axis in preventing the disease. "The anthropological fact is that culture is associated with the transmission of ideas, ways of perceiving the world, habits and customs, and at the biological level, this message affects our integral good as people," he said.
In the case of people with diabetes, support of the familial core in the care of the disease is essential for the success of the control. "The paradox is that caring for a family member with diabetes is often a strong emotional burden for all family members who also need to be addressed," said the expert.
"On this World Diabetes Day, the family issue helps us think about the costs they have or their causes and consequences for those who suffer because of them." The disease not only modifies the sufferer, but also their social circles. For this reason, comprehensive care for well-being and prevention should also focus on aspects that take into account social, cultural and psychological factors that lead to a better lifestyle, "concluded the sociologist.
Freestyle: less invasive device
Uruguay's diabetics have long been struggling for a monitoring device called Freestyle to reach Uruguay. The device allows you to control your blood glucose without having to make a capillary puncture, making it less invasive. In turn, according to the spokesman for the diabetic foundation, Gisel Mondegui, he provides the patient with more information "to be able to make decisions to avoid hyperglycaemia and hypoglycemia", in addition to allowing continuous monitoring without the need to pierce. "The company has already registered it in the Ministry of the Treasury and was authorized, but the laboratory did not decide when to start marketing it in Uruguay," he said. They are asking SMEs to provide them with the benefits of the healthcare system.
A diabetic vaccine that reduces mortality
Vaccination against flu can reduce by up to 30% the likelihood that a person with diabetes dies due to complications of this virus, experts said yesterday.
As part of the World Diabetes Day announcement, Alejandra Malacara, Sanofi Pasteur medical director in Latin America, explained yesterday that this vaccine protects diabetics and reduces the possibility of a sudden heart attack in 30%, in 22% heart failure, 19% myocardial infarction and 15 % pneumonia ", therefore, it is necessary to vaccinate," – he said. According to data from the World Health Organization (WHO), there are 425 million people with diabetes in the world.
50% of diabetics do not know they are
Diabetes is a silent disease that often does not cause any symptoms, and that is why in most cases it is diagnosed when it has already caused damage to the blood vessels and certain organs of patients, specialists have agreed.
"Diabetes is a disease that affects all organs that have cardiovascular systems, such as the heart, kidneys and eyes," said Francisco Martínez Castro, the physician of the International Agency for the Prevention of Blindness in Latin America, to Ephesus.
According to the specialist, only a small proportion of undiagnosed patients often have symptoms such as increased thirst, frequent urination, fatigue and blurred vision.
For an expert, the greatest danger associated with this disease is the vascular effect that arises when the secretion of insulin, a hormone regulating blood sugar, is not effectively controlled.
For this reason, he explained that periodic control of these values, maintaining good nutritional and health habits, and appropriate pharmacological treatment reduces 54% of the progress of diabetes, and therefore the risk of premature damage to the body.
The World Health Organization recommends that diabetics should not exceed 130 milligrams of glucose per deciliter of blood.
When it comes to people who are not ill, specialists recommend regular monitoring of blood glucose levels, because currently half of diabetics do not know that this is because they do not measure their level.
According to the WHO forecast, this disease will be the seventh cause of death in the world in 2030.