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Fazilatur attends a DAFNE course 29/10/2010

Fazilatur attended a DAFNE (Dose Adjustment for Normal Eating) course, as an observer, from 18 – 22 October 2010. This course aims to provide participants with the knowledge needed to effectively self-manage their type-1 diabetes.

The main focus of the course was how type-1 diabetes sufferers can use insulin dose adjustment to control their blood glucose levels (BG) and avoid the risk of long-term diabetes complications.

Patients tend to use the same insulin dose level every day, for example, taking two doses of Background Insulin (BI) and a few doses of Quick Acting (QA) insulin at a fixed rate and then varying their food intake to try to maintain BG levels. In contrast, the DAFNE approach works by adjusting the doses of insulin depending on how the body reacts to it in conjunction with food intake to establish a daily insulin regime. This allows constant tuning to the way a person’s body behaves, in an attempt to create a lifestyle that is as normal as possible. It is a fact that every individual’s body reacts differently to food, insulin and exercise and DAFNE reflects this.

This kind of self-management is complicated and in order to simplify things and make the process workable a course pack is given to each participant which includes a booklet of summarised DAFNE information, a diary to record BG levels, information sheets, questionnaires and carbohydrate counting charts.  These tools are then used in practical sessions throughout the course to give people confidence in managing their condition. Through listening to patients’ stories it became very clear what a huge impact this condition can have on a person’s life and the understandable resistance, despite the health implications, to dealing with it on a long-term, daily basis. It can be particularly difficult spreading this kind of expert knowledge of dose adjustments and self-management among less motivated, younger patients, an area of particular interest to UCHD which still requires significant investigation. For example, the potential for automated support with persuasive incentives for patients to maintain consistent daily management of complex tasks such as carbohydrate counting, dosage calculations & record keeping.

Leading active, busy lives leaves little room for what can often feel like a restrictive and isolating condition. The DAFNE course is sympathetic to these difficulties and also offers an opportunity for socialising, discussion, exchange of ideas and coping strategies among participants.

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Fazilatur attends a DAFNE course
Fazilatur attended a DAFNE (Dose Adjustment for Normal Eating) course, as an observer, from 18 - 22 October 2010 and gained an insight into the huge impact type-1 diabetes can have on a person's life.

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