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Well-Controlled Blood Glucose May Improve COVID-19 Outcomes

Mortality lower in hospitalized COVID-19 patients with T2DM who had well-controlled blood glucose

WEDNESDAY, May 6, 2020 (HealthDay News) -- For patients with COVID-19 and type 2 diabetes (T2D), well-controlled blood glucose (BG) is associated with lower mortality during hospitalization, according to a study published online May 1 in Cell Metabolism.

Lihua Zhu, Ph.D., from the Renmin Hospital of Wuhan University in China, and colleagues performed a retrospective multicentered study of 7,337 patients with COVID-19 in Hubei Province, China, of whom 952 had preexisting T2D. The authors sought to examine the impact of BG control on the degree of required medical interventions and mortality.

The researchers found that compared with those without diabetes, patients with T2D required more medical interventions and had significantly higher mortality (7.8 versus 2.7 percent; adjusted hazard ratio, 1.49) and multiple organ injury. Well-controlled BG (glycemic variability within 3.9 to 10.0 mmol/L) correlated with lower mortality during hospitalization compared with poorly controlled BG (upper limit of glycemic variability exceeding 10.0 mmol/L; adjusted hazard ratio, 0.14).

"We were surprised to see such favorable outcomes in [the] well-controlled blood glucose group among patients with COVID-19 and pre-existing type 2 diabetes," a coauthor said in a statement. "Considering that people with diabetes had much higher risk for death and various complications, and there are no specific drugs for COVID-19, our findings indicate that controlling blood glucose well may act as an effective auxiliary approach to improve the prognosis of patients with COVID-19 and pre-existing diabetes."

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