FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
PATIENTSLIKEME POLL REVEALS UPCOMING HOLIDAY SEASON MOST DIFFICULT FOR DIABETES PATIENTS CONTROLLING BLOOD GLUCOSE
PatientsLikeMe Introduces Daily Glucose Monitoring Feature in December
CAMBRIDGE, MA – November 22, 2011 – According to a recent PatientsLikeMe® Poll, one out of every two type 2 diabetes patients (50%) and nearly two out of every three type 1 diabetes patients (65%) say having diabetes affects their holidays. More than half of respondents (59%) say the upcoming holiday season, marked by Thanksgiving and Christmas, is most difficult for controlling blood glucose; 25% don’t find the holidays difficult. When asked what strategies they use if their blood glucose rises after increased consumption during the holiday, diabetes patients had mixed responses with three in four type 1 patients (76%) changing their medication dosage, while type 2 patients try alternative things like more exercise (34%) or just avoiding glucose-raising items altogether (34%). Two hundred and twenty-six (226) diabetes patients sharing their health data on PatientsLikeMe.com responded to the poll.
“This week represents the beginning of a challenging season for diabetes patients faced with group meals and gatherings that could impact their health,” says Ben Heywood, President and Co-founder of PatientsLikeMe. “We all have family or friends with diabetes and these poll results give a glimpse into some of the challenges they face and the strategies they use to overcome them.”
Are diabetes patients sensitive about discussing their disease with family and friends at the table during the holidays? An overwhelming 90% say no. However, more than one in three patients (38%) still feel friends and family don’t understand how diabetes affects them during the holidays. With holiday meals and parties so prevalent over the next six weeks, many of the respondents (84%) say they manage with what’s available, while 16% make some adjustment to accommodate for their diabetes (7% host to be in control, 7% eat before going out and 2% bring their own meal).
PatientsLikeMe will introduce a daily blood glucose monitoring feature for its 2,000+ diabetes patients in early December. Patients will be able to report daily glucose levels, as well as continue sharing and learning from HbA1c scores (used to monitor the glucose control of diabetics over time), treatments and dosages (such as Metformin or insulin) and symptoms and severity (including blurry vision, excessive thirst and fatigue). In recognition of Diabetes Awareness Month, PatientsLikeMe recently collaborated with industry and nonprofit partners to launch the CallingAllTypes (www.callingalltypes.com) campaign in an effort to help raise awareness and funds for the disease.
NOTE TO EDITOR: The complete PatientsLikeMe® Poll results can be downloaded here. All poll results must be sourced as originating from PatientsLikeMe®.
PatientsLikeMe® Poll Methodology
Between November 14th and November 18th, PatientsLikeMe invited all diabetes members to participate in the PatientsLikeMe® Poll, with 226 members completing the poll. Respondents represent patients with both type 1 diabetes (24%), where patients are usually diagnosed at a young age and need to daily blood glucose monitoring and insulin therapy, and type 2 diabetes (73%), where patients develop the condition gradually over time typically due to environmental factors resulting in increased blood glucose levels. In this poll, more than 200 respondents shared their HbA1c scores, with 49% reporting a score of 7.0 or lower (which represents well-controlled glucose).
PatientsLikeMe® (www.patientslikeme.com) is the world’s leading online health data sharing platform. PatientsLikeMe® creates new knowledge by charting the real-world course of disease through the shared experiences of patients. While patients interact to help improve their outcomes, the data they provide helps researchers learn how these diseases act in the real world and accelerate the discovery of new, more effective treatments. [Follow company news on www.twitter.com/PatientsLikeMe and http://blog.patientslikeme.com]