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Treating type II diabetes - A practical approach

Visit us (http://www.khanacademy.org/science/healthcare-and-medicine) for health and medicine content or (http://www.khanacademy.org/test-prep/mcat) for MCAT related content. These videos do not provide medical advice and are for informational purposes only. The videos are not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of a qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice or delay in seeking it because of something you have read or seen in any Khan Academy video. Created by Matthew McPheeters.

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Video transcript

- [Voiceover] Let's briefly go over a practical approach to treating type II diabetes. The first step is a diabetes education program. Now this is a very important element of treating type II diabetes as it teaches individuals about the disease, its potential complications, and how it can be treated. These programs will work with individuals to create nutrition and exercise plans that will help them to succeed in living a healthy lifestyle. Now, the second step in the treatment of type II diabetes will vary depending on the severity of the disease at the time of diagnosis. If the condition is mild, meaning the individual has no symptoms or evidence of complications from diabetes, then they can probably just start with lifestyle modifications alone. However, if the condition is moderate or severe, meaning they have symptoms of type II diabetes or evidence of its complications, then they should be started with lifestyle modifications as well as metformin, which is the first-line medication for type II diabetes. After being started on these interventions, the individual should be rechecked by their primary care provider in one to two months. If their hemoglobin A1C has improved and their diabetes is under control, then they can move on to routine followup which consists of a primary care visit at least two times per year as well as a yearly dilated eye exam by an ophthalmologist. However, if their hemoglobin A1C is not improved and their diabetes is not well controlled, then a second-line medication should be added to the regimen and the type of medication may vary by individual, and so this decision should be discussed with one's primary care provider. Then once again, the individual should have a recheck appointment in one to two months, and the process then repeats itself from hereon. So the fourth step would be to add a second second-line medication. Then the fifth and last step is that if an individual with type II diabetes cannot control their condition with metformin and two additional second-line medications, then insulin should be added to their treatment regimen, and then the dose should be adjusted accordingly until he or she is able to maintain normal blood glucose levels. By using this practical approach to treating type II diabetes, healthcare providers can help individuals live a happy and healthy life free of the complications of type II diabetes.