Baptist Health Corbin: Options for Managing Diabetes
Paul Pedersen, MD, discusses the prevalence of diabetes and outlines ways to manage the condition, which can lead to other health problems if left untreated.
Options for Managing Diabetes HealthTalks Transcript
Paul Pedersen, MD, Family Medicine
Diabetes is very common in southeastern Kentucky. I’m a solo practitioner, and yet I have over 400 diabetics in my practice. It’s probably a combination of genetics, our aging population, and lifestyle. I like to present diabetes to them not so much as a disease, as a risk factor. It’s a risk factor for cardiovascular disease, kidney disease, eye disease, but if that risk factor is controlled, if their diabetes is controlled, a lot of those things can be avoided. Type 1 diabetes is less common and is largely an auto-immune disorder where the body’s system gets rid of the part of the pancreas that produces insulin. Those folks with Type 1 diabetes require insulin from day one. Type 2 diabetes is largely a lifestyle-related disease and can be avoided by following a low-fat diet, exercising regularly for 30 minutes, five days weekly, and maintaining an appropriate weight. If more of my patients did so, I would be half as busy. We really take a team approach in treating our diabetics, so we will employ our diabetic educators, our nutritionists, and we’ll try to get our patients into a dedicated exercise treatment. I think it’s really important that patients feel that we are listening to them, that we understand the perspective that they’re coming from, that we understand their priorities in life.
Baptist Health Corbin offers services to include psychosocial support, insulin therapy along with nutritional education. Learn more about our services by calling 606.528.1212.