December 30, 2013

30th Anniversary of the DCCT

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anniversaryAfter 30 years, we’ve learned so much from the Diabetes Control and Complications Trial. Best of all, the epidemiology of the study is the gift that keeps giving, according to Diabetes Care.

The Diabetes Control and Complications Trial (DCCT) was a major clinical study conducted from 1983 to 1993. The study showed that keeping blood glucose levels as close to normal as possible slows the onset and progression of the eye, kidney, and nerve damage caused by diabetes.

The DCCT involved 1,441 volunteers, ages 13 to 39, with T1D. Participants had T1D for at least 1 year but no longer than 15 years. They also were required to have no, or only early signs of diabetic eye disease.

The study compared the effects of standard control of blood glucose versus intensive control on the diabetes complications. Intensive control meant keeping A1C levels as close as possible to the normal value of 6% or less. The A1C blood test reflects a person’s average blood glucose over the last 2 to 3 months. Volunteers were randomly assigned to each treatment group.

In the last 30 years, the DCCT remains one of the most highly cited diabetes research trials and one that has truly altered the course of diabetes management forever. The DCCT study and the collaboration of doctors and patients working together initiated a positive impact on the world’s population affected by T1D.

We are reminded, ever day, as people are diagnosed with T1D that good diabetes science, a good diabetes care team, and good devices, treatments, and research are the best gifts for good diabetes health.

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