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There are two articles about diabetes in this month’s Journal. The first, from Goh and colleagues from Singapore, reports on their experience of using a 24-hour observation ward to manage the care of a subset of patients who attended their emergency department (ED) with severe hypoglycaemia. It is interesting to compare their approach with the common approach in Europe, where most hypoglycaemic episodes are treated in the community. The major difference with the European experience is that the vast majority of Goh’s patients were on oral hypoglycaemic agents, not insulin. The paper includes a very helpful protocol which will be of practical use to many others (see page 719).
In a short report, Natalie Hewat and others from Australia, share their early experiences of using ED random fingerprick glucose testing as a screening tool for undiagnosed diabetes. They limited the test to patients aged ⩾45 years who had not previously been found to be diabetic. Two-thirds of those tested had random glucose levels ⩾5.5 mmol/l and were …
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