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Project Betty: Detects diabetes in children from a drop of blood before it manifests

The detection of diabetes in children is coordinated by the Pediatric Diabetes Center of the Pediatric Clinic of the 2nd Faculty of Medicine of Charles University and the Faculty Hospital in Motola. Now the Regional Health Hospital in Teplice has also joined the project.

Betty’s Prevention Project aims to diagnose type 1 diabetes in children before symptoms appear. Only a few drops of blood from a child’s finger are needed for testing.

Early detection of the disease will enable more effective treatment and prevent complications that threaten the health of small patients. The examination is intended for children without exposure diabetes between the ages of 2 and 18 and is offered free of charge.

Obesity is associated with diabetes risk:

Obesity in children.  Illustrative image

The number of obese children is increasing, and they carry extra pounds with them into adulthood. Parents can help

“We are at the beginning with the new diabetes detection project, but we expect growing interest from parents. We offer collection mostly as part of preventive examinations or planned collections,” says Kamila Koubková, head nurse of the Children’s and Adolescent Department of the Teplice Hospital.

However, parents themselves can also be involved in prevention. In the application of the Betty project, they get the necessary information and can order test kits for home examination.

“I am very happy that we can be a part of it projectwhich prevents serious health problems in child patients,” states Kamila Koubková.

And he adds that they provide examinations and test sets for self-collection free of charge.

“After homework collection the parents send a blood sample to the labs. Testing usually takes 4-8 weeks. The result is notified to parents by e-mail. In the case of a positive or borderline result, also with detailed information on how to proceed,” adds doctor Marcela Peremská from the children’s and adolescent department of the Regional Health Hospital in Teplice.

The project is to prevent later complications

Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune disease mainly of childhood, in which the body destroys its own insulin-producing cells. Cells need it to use sugar for energy.

It is not only about sugar, but also about a larger amount of hidden fats:

Test for diabetes

Diabetes is not just about sugar. Specialists will help patients with their meals

Its deficiency is manifested by excessive drinking and urination, weight loss, fatigue. If the child comes to the doctor too late, there is a total disruption of the internal environment – diabetic ketoacidosis (lack of insulin with an increased level of stress hormones).

A positive test for diabetes is detected by doctors today in about one in 300 cases children. In the case of detection of autoantibodies, the result is verified by another sample.

Children: What is diabetes and how does it work:

Source: Youtube

This is followed by automatic contacting by the Children’s Diabetes Center of the Faculty Hospital in Motola.

“Our colleagues will provide you with the necessary information and offer regular monitoring of the child. A positive test result does not automatically mean the start of insulin treatment. The goal of monitoring is the prevention of serious complications that accompany the onset of diabetes. Part of the screening may also include participation in innovative clinical trials aimed at slowing down diabetes and delaying insulin treatment,” states Zdeněk Šumník, head of the Pediatric Clinic, 2nd Faculty of Medicine, Charles University, Faculty Hospital in Motola and guarantor of the Betty project.

Obese people are increasing:

The number of diabetics is increasing significantly all over the world.  Approximately 900,000 of them are currently being treated in the Czech Republic

This diabetes treatment is being forgotten. At the same time, it works perfectly and is covered by insurance companies

The Betty project is part of a European grant. A total of 20,000 Czech children will be tested. As part of the international project, screenings are taking place in the Czech Republic, Denmark, Germany, Italy, Poland, Portugal, Sweden and Great Britain.

How do parents detect diabetes in children? A child with diabetes is usually tired, weak, suffers from loss of appetite and headaches. In addition, his organism is more susceptible to viral diseases and the overall immunity of the body is reduced. If it is not possible to reduce the blood sugar level to the norm, there is a risk of damage to the nerves and blood vessels in the child’s body. The normal blood sugar level for a healthy child is 3.3 to 5.5 millimoles per liter.

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