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Insulin therapy may do more harm than good

Stethoscope and a syringe on a diabetes test

A study published in JAMA Internal Medicine June 30, 2014, has concluded that insulin therapy in type-2 diabetic patients may indeed do more harm than good. especially for people over the age of 50.

‘In many cases, insulin treatment may not do anything to add to the person’s quality life expectancy,’ says study co-author John S. Yudkin. ‘If people feel that insulin therapy reduces their quality of life by anything more than around 3-4 percent, this will outweigh any potential benefits gained by treatment’.

Researchers estimated that a person with type-2 diabetes who begins insulin therapy at age 45 and lowers their hemoglobin A1c levels by 1 per cent may experience an extra 10 months of healthy life.

But where a patient starts treatment for type-2 diabetes at age 75, the researchers estimate the therapy may only gain them an additional 3 weeks of healthy life. The researchers say this prompts the question:  ‘Is 10-15 years of pills or injections with possible side effects worth it?’