As part of National Diabetes Month, the Basketball Hall of Fame is hosting a free national broadcast from the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) on current treatments and those “in the works” for this devastating disease
(Springfield, MA) – On Sunday, November 14, 2010, the Basketball Hall of Fame is hosting a live broadcast from the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation (JDRF) for the type 1 (juvenile) community. This free event is designed to increase public awareness and education about type 1 diabetes and will highlight the following: existing and ‘in the works’ treatments; lessening and preventing autoimmunity attack of beta cells; health care coverage for Type 1 adults; and the status of the artificial pancreas project and FDA approval process. JDRF has assembled a national panel of experts to deliver the presentation across the nation and questions will be accepted from audience.
Registration is at 2:30 p.m. and the live broadcast is from 3-4 p.m. followed by questions. Also in partnership with JDRF, the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Farm will be lighting its Dome in blue on November 14th in observance of World Diabetes Day. Hundreds of monuments around the world are also expected to be lit in blue on this day.
Type 1 diabetes is a chronic autoimmune disease in which a person’s pancreas stops producing insulin, the hormone that enables people to turn food into energy, and affects as many as 3 million Americans.
As diabetes rates continue to rise to new record highs in the U.S., one statistic remains constant in the midst of this epidemic: around 15,000 children and young adults are diagnosed every year with type 1 diabetes.
“All forms of diabetes are clearly on the rise, but the sad fact is that type 1 diabetes is by far the most serious, severe, and prevalent form of the disease affecting children,” said Richard A. Insel, M.D., Executive Vice President for Research at JDRF.
According to a JDRF poll, as many as 3 million Americans have been diagnosed with type 1 diabetes.
Type 1 diabetes strikes both children and adults, and is often diagnosed before the age of 30. To stay alive, people with type 1 diabetes must take multiple insulin injections daily or continually infuse insulin through a pump and test their blood sugar. While trying to balance insulin doses with their food intake and daily activities, people with this form of diabetes must try to avoid high blood sugars, which lead to a range of devastating complications, including heart disease, blindness and kidney disease, while also avoiding low blood sugars, which can be life-threatening. Although life-sustaining, insulin is not a cure nor does it prevent the debilitating complications associated with the disease which can include kidney failure, blindness, nerve damage, amputations, heart attack and stroke.
Diabetes is the fifth leading cause of death in the U.S., and represents more than $174 billion per year in health care costs. The disease is a leading cause of adult blindness and end-stage kidney failure, and is the reason for most amputations, after accidents.
In contrast to type 2 diabetes, in which the pancreas continues to produce insulin, type 1 diabetes is neither preventable nor correctable. Type 2 (non-insulin-dependent or adult-onset) diabetes, is a metabolic disorder, typically develops after age 40, but can develop earlier. It has recently begun to appear in children but the vast majority of cases of diabetes in children are type 1. In this form of diabetes the pancreas still produces insulin, but the body does not produce enough or is not able to use it effectively. Treatment includes diet control, exercise, self-monitoring of blood glucose and, in some cases, oral drugs or insulin. It is often reversible.
Type 1 Diabetes Symptoms
“Knowing the symptoms of type 1 diabetes is critical because the disease can be mistaken for more common illnesses, such as the flu,” Dr. Insel said. “But untreated, even over a very short time frame, type 1 diabetes is life threatening.”
The symptoms of type 1 diabetes, which often occur suddenly, include:
- Extreme thirst
- Frequent urination
- Sudden vision changes
- Fruity, sweet or wine-like odor on breath
- Increased appetite
- Sudden weight loss
- Drowsiness, lethargy
- Heavy, labored breathing
- Stupor, unconsciousness
If you, or your child or adolescent, exhibit one or more of these symptoms, you should call a doctor immediately.
More information on type 1 diabetes, and on research leading to cure, is available on the JDRF website, at www.jdrf.org.
JDRF is the leader in research leading to a cure for type 1 diabetes in the world. It sets the global agenda for diabetes research, and is the largest charitable funder and advocate of diabetes science worldwide.
The mission of JDRF is to find a cure for diabetes and its complications through the support of research. Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease that strikes children and adults suddenly, and can be fatal. Until a cure is found, people with type 1 diabetes have to test their blood sugar and give themselves insulin injections multiple times or use a pump – each day, every day of their lives. And even with that intensive care, insulin is not a cure for diabetes, nor does it prevent its eventual and devastating complications, which may include kidney failure, blindness, heart disease, stroke, and amputation.
Since its founding in 1970 by parents of children with type 1 diabetes, JDRF has awarded more than $1.3 billion to diabetes research, including more than $100 million in 22 countries in FY2009.
For more information please visit www.jdrf.org.