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Saturday, November 29, 2008

Study Details Annual Medical Cost Increases For People with Diabetes

People diagnosed with diabetes spend over $4,100 more each year on medical costs than people who don’t have diabetes, a gap that increases substantially each year following the initial diagnosis.

Researchers calculated that a 50-year-old newly diagnosed with diabetes spends $4,174 more on medical care per year than a person the same age who doesn’t have diabetes. For the person with diabetes, medical costs go up an additional $158 per year every year thereafter, over and above the amount they would increase due to aging-related increases in medical expenses.

Read more about this study which details annual medical cost increases for patients with diabetes.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Low Potassium Linked to High Blood Pressure

As a risk factor for high blood pressure, low levels of potassium in the diet may be as important as high levels of sodium—especially among African Americans.

The new study suggests that low potassium may be a particularly important contributor to high blood pressure among African Americans, and also identifies a gene that may influence potassium's effects on blood pressure.

High-potassium foods include fruits such as bananas and citrus fruits and vegetables.

Read more about this low potassium - high blood pressure study.

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

Children double use of diabetes drugs

America’s children more than doubled their use of type 2 diabetes medications between 2002 and 2005, with girls between 10 and 14 years of age showing a 166 percent increase. One likely cause: Obesity, which is closely associated with type 2 diabetes.

In addition to diabetes, the study found that utilization patterns for blood pressure, cholesterol, attention-deficit disorder and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADD/ADHD), asthma and depression medications increased at varying levels during the four year period.

Read details on children's double use of diabetic and other drugs.

Saturday, November 01, 2008

Cost of Diabetes Treatment Nearly Doubled Since 2001

Because of the increased number of patients, growing reliance on multiple medications and the shift toward more expensive new medicines, the annual cost of diabetes drugs nearly doubled in only six years, rising from $6.7 billion in 2001 to $12.5 billion in 2007.

Since more then one-tenth of all health care expenditures in the United States in 2002 were attributable to diabetes, this finding raises important questions about whether the higher cost actually translates into improved care.

The average price of a diabetes drug prescription increased from $56 in 2001 to $76 in 2007, due in large part to the rapid uptake of newly available oral medications, increasingly prescribed as alternatives to injectable insulin.

Read details of this diabetes treatment cost article.