Maybe it won’t cure diabetes. But a compound slated to begin a new Phase 2b clinical trial early next year stands a good chance of knocking diabetes back into remission.
Almost never do I write about new drugs unless they are at least in in the final stage of development, a Phase 3 trial. The odds are against them.
Of 100 drugs for which developers submit investigational new drug applications to the Food and Drug Administration for approval, about 70 will successfully complete Phase 1 trials and go on to Phase 2. About 33 of the original 100 will complete Phase 2 and go to Phase 3. And 25 to 30 of the original 100 will clear Phase 3.
Even in these difficult times when almost all of us are learning how to become frugal again, money isn’t everything. Especially when it comes to our health.
For those of us who have diabetes the A1C test is the best measure that we have of the state of our health. The A1C is the only commonly available check that we have of our average blood glucose level for the past two or three months.
Those of us who are fortunate enough to have health insurance usually go to the lab at our doctor’s office or local hospital for their A1C. I know that’s what I was doing several times a year ever since my diabetes diagnosis in 1994. My health insurance provides up to two A1C tests annually for a modest $15 co-pay each time for my visit to my primary care physician.
But until now I didn’t take into account how much time getting an A1C test at the lab took out of my busy schedule. And most importantly, I didn’t realize that the lab’s results may not be right.
Seeing your doctor probably costs a lot more than you think. Even if you have health insurance with a minimal co-pay, that’s not the half of it.
If you need to see your endocrinologist every quarter, these costs can really add up. You need to factor in the cost of travel, which can include meals out and even overnight accommodations, particularly if you live a long way from the doctor’s office. If your child is the one with diabetes, one or both parents will need to take off from work.
Until Kevin McMahon, the president and CEO of Diabetech in Dallas, told me about a new online cost calculator I hadn’t realized what a financial burden these doctor visits could be. Kevin just told me about this neat way to help you determine the cost of these visits.
Lots of people write books about diabetes (myself included). Few have made diabetes movies. But only Gabriel Cousens, M.D., did both this year.
First came his book, There is a Cure for Diabetes (North Atlantic Books, ISBM 978-1-55643-691-8). Then on June 5 the Newport International Film Festival previewed his documentary, “Simply Raw: Reversing Diabetes in 30 Days.”
Scott Mader, one of the film’s executive producer, subsequently sent me a “screener copy.” This 91-minute documentary just got here, and I have enjoyed watching it again and again in the last couple of days.
Since I knew almost nothing about peripheral arterial disease (PAD), I jumped at the chance to talk with Dr. Michael Jaff a few days ago. He is the medical director of the Vascular Diagnostic Laboratory at Massachusetts General Hospital and a specialist in treating PAD.
Three guys started some of the first diabetes websites at the dawn of the Internet age in 1995. My site, Mendosa.com, came first. But quite soon Dr. Bill Quick started his site, DiabetesMonitor.com, and Jeff Hitchcock started ChildrenWithDiabetes.com.