Diabetes in the Developing World

By CMeli1027 Latest Reply 2008-10-11 17:15:00 -0500
Started 2008-09-22 07:23:12 -0500


So I'm usually complaining about how hard my life is as a person with T1- the annoyance of dealing with my health insurance compay, endless doctor appointemnts, couting carbs, the threat of complications, etc, etc.

I just had a major reality check. This video that I saw really humbled me and thought I'd share!

The video is put out by the International Diabetes Federation/World Health Organization on type 1 diabetes in the developing world. It's really unbelievable: Type 1 is basically a death sentence for people in the developing world- it kills more people there than HIV/AIDS!

Here is their website if you are interested: http://www.lifeforachild.org/

You can see the video on their website too:

9 replies

MichaelE - 20806
MichaelE - 20806 2008-10-11 17:15:00 -0500 Report

It is remarkable and thanks for sharing the clip.

My son was diagnosed while in Thailand. And although they have very strong medical capabilities, he still had to travel 3 hours to a city that had a single endocronologist. Even then, their treatments were extremely simplistic. By the time I had traveled there to meet him I felt that I was better informed. When we returned to the US our doctor essentially had to completely retrain us.

There is a lot of knowledge that needs to be shared to really help manage this disease.


Debe Pendice
Debe Pendice 2008-10-07 07:44:34 -0500 Report

Wow, being a type 1 for almost 46 yrs, this is unbelieveable. I was glad to have you share this with me. I am still here in disbelief…

Anonymous 2008-10-02 08:30:45 -0500 Report

Working as a doctor in the third world I know the situation well. HIV/AIDS is easier to manage as the medicines are given free of cost and monitoring of the disease is less complex than Type 1 Diabetes.Insulin is never avaialable readily in Government Hospitals.If available either regular Insulin or long acting Insulin alone may be avaialable. Most of the patients nnd many of the doctors have never heard of HbA1c test.If the Type 1s survive more than 10 years it is a miracle.Fortunately the incidence of Type 1 in Developing countries, especially in my country India is very low.See the blog post http://malayalidoc.blogspot.com/2008/09/diabe...

CMeli1027 2008-10-03 02:11:06 -0500 Report

Wow. That blog post really shed some light on the problem. Thank you very much for sharing it.

What do the ministries of health in third world countries do about this problem? Or is it just so low on the list of priority (ie: when compared to the burden of infectious diseases) that they don't do anything?

I know there is some UN activity and NGO/non-profit activity trying to support diabetics in the third world, but it just seems like the support needs to come from the government.

CMeli1027 2008-10-03 02:23:55 -0500 Report

I was curious so I looked up the stats- a shocking amount of the cases of T1 are in the 3rd world. Of the estimated 440,000 children with type 1, around 250,000 live in developing nations (with 92,000 of these in India alone).

It's a bigger problem than we think!

docarun 2008-10-07 07:24:15 -0500 Report

The proportion of type 1 Diabetes patients is small in third world countries.India have around 40 million Diabetics. Of which only one tenth of a million is Type 1. Government is doing a bit.But poor whose number is large wont be able to survive much with Type 1 Diabetes as the cost of a single blood sugar test will be equivalemt to a days wage for many.

GabbyPA 2008-09-24 04:11:58 -0500 Report

Yep, that is a reality check. You are so right. At least we have choices in most cases. I never realized that it killed as many as AIDS...that is sobering too.

Frustrated mom
Frustrated mom 2008-09-23 07:13:16 -0500 Report

This disease is awful for anyone, anywhere, but i can not imagine being in the developing world…My heart goes out to all of them…

morris.js 2008-09-22 08:25:02 -0500 Report

This is a real eye opening video. I guess I never stopped to think what it would be like in other nations. Thank you for sharing this.

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