In the pediatric population, type 2 diabetes has become a growing concern. A correlation appears to exist among type 2 diabetes in children, obesity, and a sedentary lifestyle. If obesity and diabetes are left untreated, conditions such as cardiovascular disease, nephropathy, and retinopathy may result as well. These conditions indicate the incredible strain on the health care system caused by diabetes and obesity. This strain may be eased by logical treatments such as exercise and healthy eating habits for the child and family. However, these lifestyle changes are not always effective in controlling blood sugar. When lifestyle changes do not yield positive results, the clinician must decide which (if any) pharmacological treatments are safe to use in the pediatric population. Orlistat and sibutramine have been studied in children as treatments for obesity and appear to be safe and effective for this population. Metformin and insulin are among the medications approved to treat diabetes in children and adolescents. Healthcare practitioners must play a role in educating parents and their children about the effects of obesity on the development of diseases like diabetes, as well as various therapies used to manage diabetes. In addition, healthcare practitioners can assist patients and their parents in understanding the benefits and risks of medications used in the treatment of the disease, assistance that may result in them making informed decisions regarding their overall health.
Type 2 Diabetes in Children: A Growing Epidemic
Erin L. St. Onge, Carol A. Motycka, Renee L. Rose; Type 2 Diabetes in Children: A Growing Epidemic. The Journal of Pediatric Pharmacology and Therapeutics 1 October 2006; 11 (4): 212–222. doi: https://doi.org/10.5863/1551-6776-11.4.212
Download citation file: