Is there a cure for diabetes?

Ronald Tamler, MD
Endocrinology Diabetes & Metabolism
Researchers are working on a cure for diabetes. In this video, I will talk about the different approaches to curing diabetes.
William Lee Dubois
Endocrinology Diabetes & Metabolism
We can’t cure diabetes. Not yet. But we can treat it, and absent a cure, that’s still a pretty good deal.

Most of the bad and scary stuff you hear about when people talk about diabetes “complications” are not really diabetes complications at all; they are high blood sugar complications. Granted, high blood sugar is caused by diabetes, but it’s very controllable with a little effort.

The most important tool in your anti-high-blood-sugar arsenal is your meter -- a cell phone sized machine that can let you check your current blood sugar anywhere anytime.

That lets you know if you have a problem, and how serious that problem is. Once you know that, you can treat it, and fix the problem yourself -- with the advice and help of your doctor, of course!

Treatments for diabetes range from changes in eating and movement patterns (OK, yeah. I was trying to slip diet and exercise past you), all the way up to exotic injectable medications.
Mr. Eliot LeBow, CDE, LCSW
Endocrinology Diabetes & Metabolism
Past attempts to cure diabetes have ranged from full pancreatic transplant to injecting new beta cells into the islets of Langerhans. At the end of the day there is one problem that causes the attempted cures to fail.

Antibodies that are produced in white blood cells are hard wired to attack beta cells as though they were a pathogen and destroy the beta cells needed to produce insulin.

Even though some attempts have temporally cured diabetes they have also created other complications.
In attempts to prevent white blood cells from producing antibodies that destroy the new beta cells, individuals are placed on immune suppressants. They have been shown in past to cause patients to be very susceptible to other illnesses.

When the immune system is suppressed, the common cold usually turns into pneumonia. Which have caused death during past research on human participants.

At present there is no viable cure for Juvenile Diabetes. However with proper blood glucose management diabetics can live full and happy lives.

The basic rule of thumb is that whatever is healthy for a person without diabetes is also healthy and encouraged for better diabetes management. These include exercise, stress management, Good Coping skills, proper nutrition and anything that promotes a healthy lifestyle. 
Today, more and more research dollars are spent on diabetes research, which experts hope will lead to the prevention and cure of diabetes. In the meantime, you can manage your diabetes better with:
  • Home monitoring of your blood glucose levels
  • Controlling your blood pressure, and possibly monitoring your pressure at home
  • Following your individual diet
There is currently no cure for diabetes.  Diabetes is a chronic disease. A person diagnosed with diabetes will ALWAYS have diabetes. The only change that a person can make is to be either controlled or uncontrolled. A controlled diabetic meets all dietary and laboratory goals such as an A1C less than 7% and/or fasting blood glucose levels of 70 to 130 mg/dl.

Continue Learning about Diabetes

Diabetes

Diabetes mellitus (MEL-ih-tus), often referred to as diabetes, is characterized by high blood glucose (sugar) levels that result from the body’s inability to produce enough insulin and/or effectively utilize the insulin. Diabetes ...

is a serious, life-long condition and the sixth leading cause of death in the United States. Diabetes is a disorder of metabolism (the body's way of digesting food and converting it into energy). There are three forms of diabetes. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that accounts for five- to 10-percent of all diagnosed cases of diabetes. Type 2 diabetes may account for 90- to 95-percent of all diagnosed cases. The third type of diabetes occurs in pregnancy and is referred to as gestational diabetes. Left untreated, gestational diabetes can cause health issues for pregnant women and their babies. People with diabetes can take preventive steps to control this disease and decrease the risk of further complications.
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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.