Jordanian diabetes society campaigns for early screening

AMMAN — On the occasion of World Diabetes Day, the Jordanian Society for the Care of Diabetes launched a campaign entitled “Not too early for Diabetes, don’t delay screening,” the society said in a press statement.اضافة اعلان

The campaign is part of similar annual events, such as “avoid the 100” launched in 2021, and “Don’t miss the opportunity” campaign of 2020.

This year’s campaign is in partnership with Merck, a leading science and technology company.

“This campaign aims at highlighting the importance of early detection of diabetes, and prediabetes through a simple test known as the fasting blood sugar test starting at age of 35 and older,” the statement said.

It said early screening was recommended by the American Diabetes Association (ADA) in January 2022 to detect diabetes, in its early stages and avoid its complications.

“Through an awareness video, and educational social media posts, the campaign focuses its messages on the factors that increase the risk of pre-diabetes and diabetes,” the statement said.

It said that the screening was required from the most vulnerable groups, those aged 35 and older as recommended by the ADA, people with a family medical history of diabetes, obese individuals with a BMI above 25 Kilogram/m2, those with high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and gestational diabetes. It urged them to take the fasting blood sugar test soon to detect diabetes at its onset.

“Diabetes is the leading cause of blindness and contributes to 30 percent of strokes, 40 percent of heart attacks, 50 percent of kidney failure requiring dialysis, in addition to 70 percent of leg and foot amputations,” the society said.

“From here comes the importance to spread awareness about pre-diabetes stage, the need to detect risk factors early, and act to reduce the development of Type II diabetes,” it pointed out.

“Adherence to preventive measures, such as regular exercise, and a balanced diet also helps, as well as a periodic follow-up with a doctor who may recommend starting treatment if the need arises to delay or avoid the development of the condition,” it explained.

Building on this topic, society President Dr Nadima Sheghem said: “the number of people with diabetes in Jordan is increasing significantly, hence the need to unite efforts and exert energies to spread awareness about this chronic disease, and its serious complications in order to control it and limit its development.”

“The percentage of people with diabetes and prediabetes in Jordan reached 45 percent (diabetes 19.6 percent, and prediabetes 25.4 percent), and overweight and obesity reached 78 percent,” Sheghem said, citing the latest study by the National Center for Diabetes, Endocrinology and Genetics.

Early diagnosis, simple lifestyle adjustments, consulting a doctor, and adhering to the guidelines for keeping blood glucose under control “are all steps that greatly help in controlling the disease”, the society president said.

Dr Hala Sleiman, Merck’s general manager for the Near East region, said: “The need to raise awareness about the risks and complications of diabetes and prediabetes is increasing, and the importance of early diagnosis is growing to avoid or delay long-term health complications caused by it”.

She added: “In line with the commitment to its purpose ‘As One for Patients’, Merck reaffirms its support for them to improve their lives through constant cooperation with healthcare professionals besides relevant associations, and the need of early diagnosis through practical and routine examinations to identify risk factors in vulnerable groups and introduce preventive measures to reduce the progression of the disease.”

Merck has launched several campaigns in previous years, the last was in 2021, called “avoid the 100” campaign that aimed at spreading awareness about prediabetes and diabetes, and conducting the necessary blood tests to reduce its development to the second type, thus avoid serious complications.

It also urges citizens to assess their health status, and discover risk factors by filling in the required information on the following link.

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