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I guess any campaign that spreads awareness about diabetes is a good thing. But this is so uninformative as to be not helpful. For example, how easy is it for someone with Type 1 diabetes to achieve a level below 7.0? Based on my personal experience it's a lot of hard work and it carries the dangers of lows without careful monitoring.

I also question who is being advised by these adverts? Patients or their healthcare teams. Based on anecdotal things I've heard from people over the years, the average doctor (not endo) doesn't seem to understand the importance of good control. And this seems to be especially the case for people with Type 2.

I wish the money for this advertising campaign were spent in a more useful way. But I've still added the sites to the diabetes search engine (http://bernardfarrell.com/dse.html) and the Spanish buscador de diabetes (http://tinyurl.com/23xmx3).

In response to the posts by Sandra Gonzalez and Brian Rodriguez on 9/13/2007:
We urge you to find a good certified diabetes educator (CDE) and will be back to you on some resources. In the meantime you can check out www.tudiabetes.com and or www.midiabetesa1c.com

As I noted on the Revolution Health post, I have rather mixed feelings on this campaign. Although any public awareness is usually a good thing, I do think that in 30 seconds, they could have provided more information, so I frankly, was a bit disappointed.

I watched these spots and was struck that in the effort to communicate with the masses, they have knowingly omitted critical information, and may instead be spreading more misconceptions about diabetes in the process. My concerns are as follows:

First, the A1C, by itself, will do absolutely nothing to improve glycemic control, nor will it address the underlying reasons a patient fails to obtain a glycosated hemoglobin reading that is at or under the recommended level, yet the ads practically suggest that having the test will help do these very things. Second, having a number is useless unless the patient has a relationship with a healthcare team, so merely pushing them to get the A1C test falls woefully short of what is really needed, comprehensive diabetes education combined with regular care and constant vigilance.

Alexander Pope once wrote "a little knowledge is a dangerous thing", and today, the American public already thinks they know about diabetes, which sadly manifested itself in a May 2007 Medtronic Minimed study, conducted by Harris Interactive, they found:

80% of the American public cannot distinguish between type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Even more troubling was the finding that nearly 67% of those who responded to the poll incorrectly believed there is already a cure for type 1 diabetes! Among the other key findings:

- 67% mistakenly believed there is a cure for type 1 diabetes

- 51% knew there were two types of diabetes

- 36% thought there was either a "type 3 or 4" diabetes

- 25% believed that proper diet could "cure" the disease

- 32% believed exercise could be a "cure"

My bigger concern is that these PSAs will end, and thats all the world will learn about the condition, rather than using this opportunity to encourage people to learn more, as the postage stamp campaign did several years ago.

While spreading information is a good thing, but spreading more half-truths and/or only tidbits of information may do as much harm as it does good. Diabetes has long been a disease of blame and shame with accusations of non-compliance, mismanagement, and "cheating" on diets. The line of distinction has typically been diabetes complications, with complications serving as a line of demarcation between those who are proud to speak out and those who hide. In other words, people who are doing well with diabetes are congratulated and respected for their ability to manage their disease, while those who don't fail to receive care that could actually help them. The other side of that equation is never revealed, so we may be endorsing the prevailing philosophy of tolerating, rather than curing, diabetes, and with it, spreading the philosophy of blaming the patient rather than their disease.

Hola es que mi mama esta pasando por una diabetes que habeses se le sube habeses no, y me tiene desesperado porque no se como ayudarla como la puede tener controlada para que no sufra mas, me duele mucho verla sufrir y quiero ayudarla soy nuevo en esto necesito toda la informacion posible gracias.

Me acabo de enterar q tengo diabetes Type2, uncrontrolled y no se como empezar a tratar y necesito mas informacion acerca de esta enfermedad, Gracias

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