Medical experts and patients living with Diabetes have submitted that the dreaded disease is not after all a death sentence but with proper management, those affected could survive and live long. They expressed this view at a webinar to commemorate this year Ecobank Day. Ecobank Day is a special day set aside every year by the Ecobank Group, for management and staff of the bank to embark on Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) activities that impact its immediate environment and people. This year’s theme is ‘Take Action Against Diabetes’.
Dr. Mazeedat Erinosho, Public Health Practitioner and Director, Saving One Million Lives Programme, Ministry of Health, Lagos in her presentation titled “Diabetes mellitus and living healthy” opined that Diabetes can be properly managed through healthy living, regular exercise, appropriate medication, eating healthy and keeping blood sugar levels as close to normal, among others. She defined Diabetes as a metabolic disease that causes high blood sugar, noting that untreated high blood sugar from diabetes can damage nerves, eyes, kidneys and other organs. She listed common symptoms to include frequent urination, increased thirst and increased appetite, adding that if left untreated, diabetes can cause cardiovascular disease, stroke, chronic kidney disease, foot ulcers, damage to the nerves, damage to the eyes and cognitive impairment and death.
Speaking in the same light, Dr. Mosunmoluwa Obafemi Adio, Consultant Endocrinologist, Presidential Emergency Plan for AIDS Relief (PEPFAR) at University College Hospital, Ibadan, listed different types of Diabetes and some common symptoms such as frequent urination, excessive thirst, weight loss, extreme hunger, vision changes, numbness in the hands or feet, feeling very tired most of the time and dry skin. Dr. Adio who is currently a Consultant Endocrinologist with Evercare Medical hospital, made a case for regular medical check-up particularly sugar level, eating fruits and vegetables and managing weight loss.
In his testimonial, Alhaji Abdulwahab Dauda, Chairman, Diabetes Association of Nigeria Lagos Chapter and the South West Region, who has managed the Diabetes for 30 years, commended Ecobank for organising the awareness programme, stressing that the life threatening disease is not a death sentence, as it could be managed.
The 74 years old Diabetes patient linked his survival to discipline and strict adherence to medical prescriptions. “For those of us that are diabetic, the first fact you should know is that it is not a death sentence. Accept the fact and tackle it. Follow doctor’s medications religiously; do not skip your recommended drugs and meals; take your medical kits along with you at all times. I am a living witness that you can survive the disease”. Also sharing his experience, United States based, Edwin Velarde canvassed for regular exercise, strict adherence to medication and regular check-up.