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Self-Management Support For Insulin Therapy In Type 2 Diabetes

M. Funnell, D. Kruger, M. Spencer
Published 2004 · Medicine

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PURPOSE The purpose of this article is to describe the self-management support that can be provided by diabetes educators for type 2 diabetes patients who are transitioning from therapy with oral hypoglycemic agents to insulin. METHODS The role of the diabetes educator in patient education and self-management support during all aspects of insulin therapy is discussed. Phases during which support may be especially important include the decision-making process, initiation, and maintenance. RESULTS Although some patients make the decision fairly easily, the introduction of insulin therapy is likely to raise many issues and questions for many type 2 diabetes patients. The more reluctant patients may experience psychological insulin resistance, a syndrome where insulin therapy is viewed as a threat or failure, which can affect health professionals as well. The diabetes educator can provide support and approaches to help diminish this resistance and make the transition to insulin therapy easier and more effective for patients with type 2 diabetes. CONCLUSIONS Education and ongoing self-management support are needed for informed decision making and the initiation and maintenance of insulin therapy. Therefore, diabetes educators have a critical role to play during both the decision-making process and the safe transition to insulin therapy.
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