The Advance study presented at the American Diabetes Association show there's a way to prevent worsening of kidney damage and improve quality of life
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Bob Harding: This is where some people with Type 2 Diabetes end up. Its a Hemodialysis unit, where patients have their blood cleansed of impurities. It's a job normally done by the kidneys, but kidney failure is a debilitating side effect of Type 2 Diabetes. These patients must spend several hours a day, every two or three days. Ellen knows all too well what it is to go through dialysis. It has been two years since she started the treatment. Female Speaker: It's a shock to know that your life is about to change dramatically. You are going to have to be hooked up to a machine to give you quality living, and without it you don't have a life. Bob Harding: With the support of her family, she is at the hospital three times a week. Female Speaker: Dialysis changes everybody's life, not just the patient that requires it, but it changes how our lives evolve. You end up -- my mom comes to the hospital for her treatment, but we too are just sitting and waiting also, it affects the family. Bob Harding: Exciting study results presented at the annual meeting of the American Diabetes Association shows there is a way to prevent the onset and the worsening of kidney damage and keep many of these patients from having to go through the ordeal of Hemodialysis. Lead Canadian investigator for the Advance International Study, Dr. Pavel Hamet, is the chief of Gene Medicine services at Montreal University Hospital. Dr. Pavel Hamet: Main results of the study is the reduction of the complications of diabetes at the vascular level, particularly important for the kidney. Kidney Diabetes leads ultimately to the Hemodialysis and kidney failure, and we have been able in Advance Study to demonstrate that we can decrease by 21% this complication using intensification of glucose control by nearly normalizing blood glucose levels. Bob Harding: The Advance Study is the largest ever of its kind. It followed more then 11,000 patients for periods ranging from 4-6 years. The participants came from 20 countries around the world and all had one thing in common, they had been diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes. Female Speaker: They have to come here at hospital or center to receive treatment three times a weeks and time is four hours, and they have to accept this sickness and emotionally it's very hard for many of them. Bob Harding: There are over 17,000 Canadians on dialysis every year, a number that is expected to double by 2013. Physicians advocate various strategies to maintain normal blood glucose levels, proper diet, regular exercise, and medication all play a part. If you have questions about blood glucose levels, please talk to you doctors. This is Bob Harding reporting.