February 24, 2012

SMBG Claimed To Be Ineffective for Type 2

U.S. National Library of Medicine publishes PubMed Health and their first statement at the top of the article has this to say in as a preface to a German study, “Regular self-monitoring of glucose levels has not been proven to have benefits for people with type 2 diabetes who do not inject insulin. It is not known whether self-monitoring can help prevent diabetes-related complications in this group of people.”

I detest the way this is stated and I am seeing this proclaimed more and more. The one statement from a 2007 study Scottish study mentioned here really irritates me - “Self monitoring is suggested to facilitate patient empowerment, but it was evident from these participants' accounts that they were self monitoring for their health professionals' benefit, rather than for their own, even though the professionals did not show interest in the readings.”

This tells me that these people have not been educated in the value and purpose of their testing. This I must blame on the physicians and ask why there is so little education. A little education can go a long way, but these physicians must not know the purpose of testing either. Even five minutes would be a start and the patients could know some of the benefits.

There have been many studies of similar nature to discredit self-monitoring of blood glucose (SMBG). What we do not have is confirmation of the criteria used in selecting participants. For all the studies to arrive at the same conclusions, we must wonder if steps were taken to obtain type 2 patients not interested in testing and not likely to test.

Alan Shanley from Australia has three blogs about the same topic and I will refer you to my last blog, which has links to two others. It is dreadful that these studies have taken place with the results that show people with type 2 diabetes do not understand the purpose of blood glucose testing. Many of the type 2 bloggers are doing their best to dispute this and educate other people with type 2 diabetes.

In the US, most insurance companies do allow two test strips per day and follow the policy of Medicare. Therefore, within these parameters I would urge people to read my blog here about post prandial testing and follow the links to other bloggers. Then take time to read this blog about what testing can do to assist you in your diabetes management.

This blog by Will Ryan is the last blog for now that I will ask you to read. Will I stop writing about this topic? No, as long as these studies continue, I will continue to write about self-monitoring of blood glucose and the importance of doing testing.

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