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“Prevalence of diabetes of 16% is extremely high, we need to reduce it, warns Dra. Hernández

Persistent risk factors impact the probability of life of these patients, increasing mortality.

Dr. Leticia Hernández, President-elect of the Puerto Rican Society of Endocrinology and Diabetology. Photo: Journal of Medicine and Public Health. Fabiola Plaza.

Due to the epidemiological level that is currently happening on the Island, in the face of this disease, it is vital to have all the updated information on the different treatments and determining factors.

“It is extremely important for all physicians and primary care physicians, because we have a prevalence extremely high of 16% and we were not able to reduce it, and in addition, patients living with the condition are at risk of multiple complications, at the cardiovascular, neurological, and renal levels that affect their quality of life,” said Dr. Leticia Hernández, president of Puerto Rican Society of Endocrinology and Diabetology.

These risk factors impact the probability of life of these patients, since mortality is increased, for which it is vital that primary care physicians learn to manage these patients in a comprehensive manner, treating all these parallel conditions that arise from the diabetes.

Within the framework of the ExpoSalud event, which is a space co-created from the Journal of Medicine and Public Health, aimed at patients to have this approach with first-hand information from specialists in various areas of Puerto Rico.

Even though the diabetes was known for its appearance in adult life, however, it is now known that the diabetes type 1 and 2 can appear not only in adulthood, but also in childhood. This is due to the number of children and young people suffering from obesity.

There is no cure for diabetes type 2, taking certain steps, such as losing weight, eating healthy, and exercising, may help bring the disease under control. But if this is not enough to control glucose, then the patient may need medication.

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With the advancement of the disease in Puerto Rico, a phenomenon is being seen that is based on the increase in cases, the conditions of COVID-19, but that is also related to the accessibility to treatments, medical attention, and the improvement of patients.

“Right now we have some initiatives, created by Dr. Mirian Mayende, also using endocrinologists from the Puerto Rican Society of Endocrinology and Diabetology, and one of them is the course, Diabetes University Online, where primary care physicians have access to 14 credits of continuing education in comprehensive patient management with diabetesHernandez maintains.

In addition to reiterating, vital factors are that the patient, together with his doctor and nutritionist, manage the sugar levels in medicines and food. “There has to be a coordination, maybe a snack, that contains protein and carbohydrates for a particular period, where that patient has a higher level of risk of hypoglycemia.”

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