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High blood sugar a marker for severe Covid

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The way our body can manage glucose—blood sugar—could determine the severity of a Covid-19 infection.

People with type 2 diabetes—where the body has lost its ability to naturally control glucose levels—are nearly 50 percent more likely to need intensive care, researchers from Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute have discovered.

People who have struggled with glucose control for at least two to three years were more susceptible to a severe Covid infection.

The researchers analysed the records of more than 16,000 diabetics who caught Covid and matched their ability to control glucose levels against the severity of their Covid infection.  Those with longterm poor glucose management were 48 percent more likely to end up in the ICU.  For every one percent increase in HbA1c levels, the marker for blood sugar, there was a 12 percent increase in the patient’s risk of needing ICU care.

(Source: BMJ Open Diabetes Research & Care, 2021; 9: e002299)

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