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For individuals with unhealthy blood tests measuring glucose levels, taking preventive measures to reduce their diabetes risk may cost less in the long run than treating metabolic health problems, according to a new study published in the journal Diabetes Care.
In a study funded by the National Institutes of Health, researchers examined data from a previous study analyzing the effectiveness of diabetes prevention programs involving the use lifestyle counseling or medications in individuals at risk for developing diabetes.
The results of the investigation showed that 10-year medical costs for those who received either the lifestyle counseling or the medication were lower than costs for those who received standard care. Costs were the lowest for participants who received the blood sugar-lowering drug metformin.
The researchers said that preventive methods have been proven effective at helping individuals who are likely to develop diabetes avoid the metabolic condition entirely. However, now there is evidence to support the cost effectiveness of these types of initiatives.
The findings could have important implications for the treatment of individuals with risk factors for diabetes. Given the high cost of treatment, preventive measures may be preferable.
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