Many individuals with type 2 diabetes are unaware of the dangers of hypoglycemia
A majority of individuals with type 2 diabetes experience low blood sugar levels during the course of everyday activities like working, driving and exercising. In some of these situations, the consequences could be serious, as low blood sugar often results in fainting and loss of consciousness.
The survey was conducted by researchers from the American College of Endocrinology and was presented at the American Association of Clinical Endocrinologists' 20th Annual Meeting and Clinical Congress. The findings underscore the importance of providing more education to individuals with type 2 diabetes, as many respondents were unable to identify the warning signs of hypoglycemia or its causes.
The survey found that 55 percent of respondents had experienced incidences of low blood sugar at some point since they had been diagnosed with diabetes. While 42 percent of these individuals said that the events happened while they were working, 19 percent reported experiencing low blood sugar while driving, which is a dangerous situation. The response of one participant underscored this risk.
"My experience with low blood sugar happened while driving home," said respondent Helen Rayon. "I made it home, but fainted on my lawn and had to be taken to the emergency room. Since then, I've talked to my doctor about how to recognize symptoms of low blood sugar and learned that there are steps I can take to help reduce the chances of this happening again."
This type of education may be important, as the survey found that many people were unaware of the causes of hypoglycemia. As much as 46 percent of respondents didn't know that excessive exercise is one of the main causes of the condition.