Cell Phones Helping Manage Diabetes: According to a new study from the University Of Maryland School Of Medicine, an interactive computer software program could be very effective in helping patients with type 2 diabetes, manage their diabetes using their mobile phone.
Patients who used the mobile health software were studied, it was seen that those using the mobile health software gained a reduction in the amount of hemoglobin A1C in their blood. The amount lowered was 1.9 percent over a period of one year. Through these findings, researchers are looking at other health management alternatives as well.
Charlene C. Quinn, Ph.D., R.N., an assistant professor of epidemiology and public health at the University Of Maryland School Of Medicine and the principal investigator states, “These results are very encouraging. The 1.9 percent decrease in A1C that we saw in this research is significant. Previous randomized clinical trials have suggested that just a 1 percent decrease in A1C will prevent complications of diabetes, including heart disease, stroke, blindness and kidney failure.”
Since the world is mostly dependent on internet use in today’s more technical savvy world, the study shows that more people are managing their diabetes better through the internet located on their mobile phones or other mobile communications devices. Not only can patients manage their diabetes, they can send their results directly to their doctor as well.
Dr. Quinn gives more details about the mobile software program, “Mobile health has the potential to help patients better self-manage any chronic disease, not just diabetes. This is one of the first large, reported, randomized clinical studies examining the mobile health industry, which is rapidly growing. The U.S. Food & Drug Administration just last month released draft guidance on how it intends to regulate the field. Our results can help define the science behind this new strategy for disease management.”
While this software is perfect for type 2 diabetic patients, it is not recommended for type 1 diabetic patients. People who have been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes either cannot produce enough insulin to process sugar into energy or their cells do not recognize the insulin at all. The important measure to manage diabetes is to control the amount of hemoglobin A1C is a person’s blood. A1C is a molecule that is found in a person’s red blood cells that binds itself with sugar. If a person’s blood sugar level is high, their A1C level will be high as well. The recommended amount for a person’s A1C level is 7 percent. People with diabetes stand at about 9 percent or more which can increase any diabetic complications.
Dr. Quinn says, “We tell patients that they can meet these goals if they eat a healthy diet, exercise daily and take their medication as directed, but we don’t really give them the tools to do that.”
However, the new mobile software program is just the tool that type 2 diabetics need to manage their diabetes.