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Severe Hypoglycemia Common in Type 2 Diabetes

Highest risk for those with near-normal or very poor glycemic control

Severe Hypoglycemia Common in Type 2 Diabetes

WEDNESDAY, July 31 (HealthDay News) -- Severe hypoglycemia is common among patients with type 2 diabetes, with the highest risk among those with near-normal or very poor glycemic control, according to a study published online July 30 in Diabetes Care.

Kasia J. Lipska, M.D., from the Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, Conn., and colleagues surveyed 9,094 patients with type 2 diabetes (30 to 77 years old) about whether they had experienced severe hypoglycemia requiring assistance in the prior year and then examined the association with hemoglobin A1c (HbA1c) levels in the prior year.

The researchers found that 10.8 percent of patients overall reported experiencing severe glycemia, ranging from 9.3 to 13.8 percent across HbA1c levels. Compared with individuals with an HbA1c of 7 to 7.9 percent, the risk of hypoglycemia was highest for those with HbA1c of less than 6 percent (relative risk, 1.25) and an HbA1c of 9 percent or greater (relative risk, 1.16). The association between HbA1c and hypoglycemia was largely unaffected by age, diabetes duration, and category of diabetes medication.

"Severe hypoglycemia was common among patients with type 2 diabetes across all levels of glycemic control," Lipska and colleagues conclude. "Risk tended to be higher in patients with either near-normal glycemia or very poor glycemic control."

One author disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

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