HEALTH

JAMA: Half of U.S. population either pre-diabetic or diabetic

BY Michael Johnsen

CHICAGO – In 2011-2012, the estimated prevalence of diabetes among U.S. adults was 12% to 14% and the prevalence of prediabetes was 37% to 38%, indicating that about half of the U.S. adult population has either diabetes or prediabetes, according to a study in the Sept. 8 issue of JAMA. Though data from recent years suggests that the increasing prevalence of diabetes may be leveling off.
 
"Although obesity and type 2 diabetes remain major clinical and public health problems in the United States, the current data provide a glimmer of hope," wrote William Herman and Amy Rothberg, both of the University of Michigan Health System, Ann Arbor, in an accompanying editorial."The shift in cultural attitudes toward obesity, the American Medical Association's recognition of obesity as a disease and the increasing focus on societal interventions to address food policy and the built environment are beginning to address some of the broad environmental forces that have contributed to the epidemic of obesity," they noted. "The effort of the AMA to promote screening, testing and referral of high-risk patients for diabetes prevention through its Prevent Diabetes STAT program and the CDC's efforts to increase the availability of diabetes prevention programs, ensure their quality, and promote their use appear to be helping to identify at-risk individuals and provide the infrastructure to support individual behavioral change."
 
The prevalence of total diabetes increased from 9.8% in 1988-1994 to 10.8% in 2001-2002 to 12.4% in 2011-2012 and increased significantly in every age group, in both sexes, in every racial/ethnic group and by all education levels.
 
In the overall 2011-2012 population, the unadjusted prevalence was 14.3% for total diabetes, 9.1% for diagnosed diabetes, 5.2% for undiagnosed diabetes and 38% for prediabetes. Among those with diabetes, 36.4% were undiagnosed.
 
Compared with non-Hispanic white participants (11.3%), the prevalence of total diabetes was higher among non-Hispanic black participants (21.8%), non-Hispanic Asian participants (20.6%) and Hispanic participants (22.6%).
 
The prevalence of prediabetes was greater than 30% in all sex and racial/ethnic categories, and generally highest among non-Hispanic white individuals and non-Hispanic black individuals.
 
The percentage of cases that were undiagnosed was higher among non-Hispanic Asian participants (50.9%) and Hispanic participants (49%) than all other racial/ethnic groups.
 
Diabetes is a major cause of illness and death in the United States, costing an estimated $245 billion in 2012 due to increased use of health resources and lost productivity. 
 
 
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OTC industry efforts contribute to decline in pediatric emergency room visits

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON – There has been a declining number of emergency department visits due to children ingesting medications without supervision since 2010, according to an article published in Pediatrics the official journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics, on Tuesday. 
 
After rising steadily from 2004 through 2010, the number of ED visits for these exposures peaked in 2010. According to the article, after 2010 this trend reversed, and visits decreased by an average of 6.7% annually.
 
“Keeping young children safe by preventing them from accidentally ingesting medicines while unsupervised is of the utmost importance to the makers of over-the-counter medicines,” stated Scott Melville, president and CEO for the Consumer Healthcare Products Association. “We are encouraged that this decrease demonstrates that industry’s voluntary labeling and packaging efforts as well as our educational partnerships are keeping kids safe," he said. 
 
CHPA is involved in a number of long-term efforts targeted at preventing accidental, unsupervised ingestion of medicines by young children. "The most impactful solution is storing all medicines up and away and out of children's reach and sight every time they are used," Melville said. "Through Up and Away and Out of Sight, a campaign led by CHPA’s Educational Foundation and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s PROTECT Initiative, CHPA works to remind parents and caregivers to take this step."
 
CHPA member manufacturers also voluntarily added flow restrictors to infants’ and children’s liquid acetaminophen products in 2011. Flow restrictors are one tool for parents in keeping their children safe because they reduce the amount of medicine that can be ingested if the package is not properly closed or if the child-resistant packaging is defeated. 
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RockTape targets new patient populations with kinesiology tape

BY Michael Johnsen

CAMPBELL, Calif. – RockTape on Tuesday introduced RockTapeRx, a new gentle kinesiology tape with the same stretch characteristics as RockTape's sport-focused kinesiology tapes.
 
"We've always been a performance-oriented brand," said Greg van den Dries, CEO of RockTape. "As we grew, it became clear we needed to offer the quality of RockTape to a whole new group of customers with special needs."
 
RockTapeRx's new gentle adhesive is ideal for special patient populations, including children, the elderly, those with neurological disorders, and women who are pregnant. It's also a great option for those with sensitive skin.
 
"Our medical practitioners have been demanding this product for quite some time," said Steve Capobianco, director of medical affairs for RockTape. 
 
RockTapeRx is launching exclusively in two-inch bulk rolls with five colors: red, black, beige, pink and blue.
 
RockTapeRx is available now through RockTape.com and medical distributors nationwide, the company noted. 
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