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Jennifer Heisler, RN

Diabetics Have Higher Risk of Death After Surgery

By October 21, 2010

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A new study by The Cleveland Clinic indicates that diabetics have a higher risk of death after surgery, even if their blood glucose (sugar) level is normal at the time of surgery.

The study found that there was a significant difference in the rate of death in the year after surgery when diabetics and non-diabetics were compared.  That was not unexpected information, but the fact that well-controlled diabetics still faced a significant elevation in risk was new news.

What Does This Mean For You?

For the diabetic, good control is always better than bad control or no control.  In the weeks following surgery, a normal blood sugar can make the difference between a wound that heals quickly and a wound that won't heal.  Wound care is especially important, preventing infections is a primary goal.

If you typically have poor control over your blood glucose level, keep in mind that a sudden change to tightly controlled blood glucose levels can cause problems, even though normal glucose levels are emphasized by the medical community. Make sure your doctor is aware of your plan to take control of your blood glucose levels and able to help if you experience complications.

The health benefits of a normal blood glucose level are numerous, so don't give up!

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