Tuesday, November 20, 2012

World Diabetes Day— 2012

World Diabetes Day is the primary global awareness campaign of the diabetes mellitus world and is held on November 14 of each year (1). It was introduced in 1991 by the International Diabetes Federation and the World Health Organization in response to the alarming rise of human diabetes around the world.  

World Diabetes Day is a campaign that features a new theme chosen by the International Diabetes Federation each year to address issues facing the global diabetes community. While the campaigns last the whole year, the day itself marks the birthday of Frederick Banting who, along with Charles Best, first conceived the idea which led to the discovery of insulin in 1922 (2).

Charles H. Best and Frederick G. Banting (on right) with one of the diabetic dogs used in their studies of insulin
This year's campaign theme is "Diabetes: Protect our Future" (1,3). In the past five years alone, diabetes rates among dogs in the U.S. have increased roughly 33% among dogs and 16% among the nation's cat population, per a national analysis of pet health (3).  This emphasizes the importance of this disorder in our cats and dogs as well as human patients with diabetes.

To successfully manage diabetes in animals, one must understand the disease and monitor and provide daily treatments to the cat or dog with diabetes. Treatment involves a combination of weight loss (if obese), diet, and insulin injections generally twice daily.

  1. World Diabetes Day – Official website.
  2. Frederick Grant Banting (1891-1941), codiscoverer of insulin. Journal of the American Medical Association 1966;198:660-661.
  3. World Diabetes Day 2012 - Expanding the circle of influence (Published in Diabetes Voice, Volume 57 Number 2 July 2012)
  4. Washburn L. Human health risks on the rise in animals. The Record. April 20, 2011.

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