STUDY ON THE EFFECTIVE MANAGEMENT OF DIABETES AMONG THE RURAL POPULATION OF TAMILNADUS. VANDHANA AND K.S. MEENAKSHISUNDARAM
Screening for breast and cervical cancer has helped in early detection and has increased the cure rate and longevity of people. Diabetes Mellitus (DM) more of a lifestyle disease, is far more prevalent and has the potential to incapacitate many if left undiagnosed and treated late. Simple blood tests like random/ post prandial /Glucose tolerance test (GTT) for sugar, when done periodically has several tangible and intangible benefits. Medical costs incurred by a person with diabetes are two or five fold higher than those incurred by people without diabetes because of potential DM related complications. This paper aims to analyse the awareness level in people with incidentally diagnosed and established DM. The data has been collected from people visiting the local laboratory in Arakonam Taluk, Tamilnadu on their own initiative to test their blood glucose levels. A prospective study of rural people with established DM or incidentally diagnosed DM between Feb 2015 and July 2015 was done. Patients were given questionnaires to understand their basic knowledge of the disease, its complications and treatment options, including life style changes. Among a total of 78, 47 were eligible samples, male- female ratio was 1:0.9. Analysing with MS-excel it was found 63% of the patients were incidentally diagnosed to have DM. 53% had basic knowledge of the complications of DM. Comparing this with 37% of patients with established DM, only 14% were aware of the complications associated with untreated diabetes and 17% were yet to start medical treatment. All of them were aware or had already made life style changes to control diabetes. Eventhough Medical facilities exist throughout primary health centres for treating DM, its seems to be their lack of knowledge preventing them from seeking early treatment.
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