Insulin pumps more effective than injections

Over the last 15 years or so, the use of insulin pumps to treat type 1 diabetes has increased dramatically, particularly among children.  Now, the longest and largest study on the subject has found that they are more effective at controlling blood sugar levels than injections, and that pumps are associated with fewer complications.  Researchers from Princess Margaret Hospital for Children in Australia conducted the longest and largest study on the use of insulin pumps, concluding that the apparatus can greatly aid in reducing episodes of severe low or high blood sugar levels.

This study, done by researchers at the Princess Margaret Hospital for Children in Australia, followed 345 patients on pump therapy, matched with patients taking traditional insulin shots, for a period of 3.5 years.  Those using pumps had been treating themselves with them an average of 4.1 years.  The researchers looked at the mean HbA1c, a standard method of measuring blood glucose control.  Both groups started with roughly the same HbA1c, but the pumps cut episodes of hypoglycemia (periods of dangerously low blood sugar) in half and also reduced the rate of hospital admissions associated with ketoacidosis (a common complication of type 1 diabetes).

Though pumps require more attention and management, the results of the study could help encourage more children with diabetes to switch to this treatment approach.

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Sourced from: Science Daily, Longest and Largest Study of Insulin Pumps to Treat Type 1 Diabetes in Children Shows They Control Blood Sugar More Effectively and With Fewer Complications Than Injections