Bermuda Leads the Way in International Diabetes Study

Bermuda Ahead of USA, Canada, Australia and Ireland for Target Blood Sugar Levels

Bermuda has come out ahead of the United States, Canada, Australia and Ireland in an international diabetes study. The ORIGIN (Outcome Reduction with Initial Glargine Intervention) study involves 22 countries and 12,612 participants from across the world. In the most recent ORIGIN newsletter, Bermuda ranked first for having the highest percentage of study participants in the target blood sugar range. KEMH’s Diabetes Centre and Cardiac Care Unit are conducting the ORIGIN study, and 13 participants are enrolled in Bermuda.

ORIGIN study coordinators have published the following top ten list for target blood sugar values:

1) Bermuda
2) USA
3) Canada
4) Australia
5) Ireland
7) Belarus
8) Estonia
9) Sweden
10) Italy
11) Colombia

The ORIGIN study involves pre- or early type 2 diabetes patients with a high risk of vascular disease and examines the possibility of preventing future cardiovascular disease with insulin glargine injections and omega 3-fatty acids. The study commenced in September 2003 and is expected to conclude in October 2009.

“We are very encouraged by these results, as they demonstrate that both study participants and health care staff are doing an excellent job on this study so far, “ said Debbie Jones, Clinical Educator at KEMH’s Diabetes Centre. “Because diabetes is such a widespread condition in Bermuda, it’s imperative that we have the right resources and support in place to carry out initiatives such as the ORIGIN study. We’re looking forward to carrying out more research in this field.”

The Diabetes Centre plays a major role in the community, particularly since 14% of the Bermuda population is affected by this condition. In 2004 alone, 165 patients were diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes. This past year, 246 clients enrolled in Diabetes Centre classes designed to assist and educate newly diagnosed patients. The classes include morning walks in the Botanical Gardens as well as instruction in diet and cooking, as part of an effort to help clients integrate a healthy lifestyle into their daily routine.

KEMH’s Cardiac Diagnostic Unit (CDU) is responsible for non-invasive cardiac testing. Electrocardiograms (ECG), Holter Monitoring, Stress Tests, Echocardiograms (Echo), Stress Echocardiograms and Pacemaker Analysis are all performed at the CDU. All patients must be referred by their general practitioner, internist or cardiologist before having a test. CDU staff performed a total of 14,485 tests at the CDU in 2004 alone.

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