One exciting development in hypoglycemia research has been the preliminary results from the Hypo-RESOLVE Study – a project developed by JDRF and Novo Nordisk to better understand the impact of hypoglycemia and its relationship to diabetes complications. The study analyzed cases of hypoglycemic events in over 22,000 people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes and outlined set hypoglycemia categories:

  • Level 1: 54 mg/dl – 70 mg/dL
  • Level 2: Less than 54 mg/dL
  • Level 3: Also referred to as severe hypoglycemia, this is any case of low glucose that requires emergency assistance from someone else.
  • comment 72 mg/dl = 4 mmol/l

Dr. Joseph O’Reilly from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, shared some of the preliminary results from the Hypo-RESOLVE study:

  • There is an association between the number of hypoglycemic events in the past 45 days and the risk for another hypoglycemic event (of any level) in the following 45 days.
    • This was seen in both people with type 1 and type 2 diabetes, the more events you had previously, the greater your risk for another event.
  • Frequent low glucose levels were associated with an increased risk of nerve disease (neuropathy) and heart disease in participants with type 2 diabetes. The data indicated that there may be a relationship between hypoglycemia and health complications in people with type 1 diabetes, but those results were not significant.

While low blood sugar can be difficult to avoid completely, these results indicate that reducing all levels of hypoglycemia can help decrease your risk for serious health complications. Given that hypoglycemic events are associated with subsequent severe hypoglycemia, which in turn is associated with further complications like nerve damage or heart disease, Dr. O’Reilly said that these preliminary results suggest that a snowball effect may be initiated by experience any degree of hypoglycemia.



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