Is Delaying the Onset of Type 1 Diabetes Possible?

girl testing blood sugar - Delaying the Onset of Type 1 Diabetes

Recent approval of TZIELD for the delay of Type 1 diabetes in November 2022 opens the possibility that people at greatest risk of getting Type 1 diabetes may be able to delay it’s onset.

In a study posted in the New England Journal of Medicine found that using this drug, delays Type 1 diabetes by roughly 2 years and longer in some cases. It is administered by IV for 14 continuous days. The target audience is adults and pediatric patients 8 years and up and are in Stage 2 diabetes which is when lab work shows the presence of the disease, but the patient doesn’t have any symptoms.

Most people who are screened for Type 1 diabetes are first degree relatives of those with the condition. First degree relatives of people with Type 1 diabetes are estimated to be about 30,000 in the United States.

Unfortunately, this drug will cost $193,850. The company launched a program called COMPASS to help patients navigate insurance reimbursement, as well as with financial assistance.

Another study using data from the United States and Europe found that screening children ages 2 and 6 years old for Type 1 diabetes would identify most of those who would go on and develop the disease by midadolescence. (Lancet Diabetes Endocrinol. 2022 Aug:10:589-96.

So the question becomes, how can we identify most patients but at an affordable cost? People at JDRF have been working on this question for years. All newborns are tested for certain diseases and Type 1 diabetes might be the next test to be added. But it may not happen quickly because our health care system has so many payers, public and private.

Source: Clinical Endocrinology News.Vol.18.No.1.January 2023.

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As a Diabetes Educator and Nutritionist I help my patients cope with managing their diabetes - whether it's diet, nutrition, supplements, blood sugar, or pump therapy.

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