Beaumont hosts ‘Taking Control of Your Diabetes’ Feb. 20

Beaumont Health System's diabetes support group is inviting area residents to attend "Taking Control of Your Diabetes" Feb. 20 at the Beaumont Medical Center, Sterling Heights. Guest speaker, JoAnn Henderson-Collins, diagnosed with type 2 diabetes 27 years ago, will share her experience living with and managing her diabetes.

The 7:15 p.m. program will take place in the master classroom at the Beaumont Family Medicine Center, 44250 Dequindre Road in Sterling Heights across the street from Beaumont Hospital, Troy.

While there is no fee to attend this Wednesday evening program, registration is required. To register, call 800-633-7377 or go online at classes.beaumont.edu.

Says Azza Elmorsy, R.N., C.D.E, coordinator, Diabetes Outpatient Education, Beaumont, Troy, "Ms. Henderson-Collins' message is both inspiring and important. She knows first-hand the challenges and obstacles to maintaining control of her diabetes."

JoAnn Henderson-Collins is a member of the A1C Champions Program, supported by Sanofi, which is a patient-led approach to diabetes education. During her program she'll address many topics, including:

  • Achieving good glucose control
  • Learning about effective diabetes self-management
  • Developing a balanced, healthy lifestyle
  • Planning and prioritizing diabetes management
  • Overcoming fears about diabetes
  • Finding resources for diabetes support

Henderson-Collins describes herself as a stay-at-home mom, a doting grandmother and a diabetes activist.

"While daily self-monitoring of glucose is recommended for those with diabetes, so too are A1C tests," adds Elmorsy, a certified diabetes educator. "The A1C test measures average blood glucose levels over the past two to three months, almost like a quarterly report card. While it does not replace daily self-testing, it is a good indicator for the patient and their medical team on how well their treatment plan is working."

According to the National Institutes of Health, type 2 diabetes is the most common form of diabetes, accounting for 90 to 95 percent of all Americans diagnosed with this metabolic disorder. Diabetes is a chronic, widespread condition characterized by high blood sugar, known as hyperglycemia. When the body does not produce or properly use insulin, blood sugar levels rise. Insulin is a hormone needed to transport sugar from the blood into the cells of the body for energy. Symptoms for type 2 diabetes usually develop gradually; and some people experience no symptoms.

There is evidence that maintaining near-normal blood glucose levels may reduce life-threatening complications. A 1998 European study showed that intensive control of blood glucose and blood pressure reduced the risk of complications in those with type 2 diabetes: blindness, kidney disease, stroke, and heart attack.

For more information on the Feb. 20 program, contact Azza Elmorsy at 248-964-8144 or azza.elmorsy@beaumont.edu. Along with the Beaumont, Troy diabetes support group that meets every third Wednesday of the month, a similar group meets at Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak.

Upcoming Beaumont, Troy support group meeting programs:

  • March 20 - ophthalmologist Stephen Tait, M.D., Ph.D.
  • April 17 - podiatrist Timothy Baessler, D.P.M.
  • May 15 - pharmacist Elena Coppol, R.Ph.
  • June 19 - endocrinologist Adbul Al-Kassab, M.D., Ph.D.

Beaumont Health System has a multidisciplinary diabetes management program that can help individuals manage their diabetes. The diabetes management team is comprised of an endocrinologist, podiatrist, ophthalmologist and certified diabetes educators from different disciplines, including registered nurses, registered dietitians, exercise physiologists, pharmacists, physical therapists and psychotherapists.

The Diabetes Outpatient Education Program at Beaumont is certified by the Michigan Department of Community Health and is recognized by the American Diabetes Association. All non-physician educators in the Diabetes Management Program at Beaumont are nationally certified as diabetes educators. Diabetes outpatient education classes are available at Beaumont Hospital, Grosse Pointe; Beaumont Hospital, Royal Oak; and Beaumont Hospital, Troy. For more information on diabetes education, call 866-843-0220.

# # #