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Today, November 14th, is being observed as World Diabetes Day. The day aims at increasing awareness of the effects of diabetes and its complications among the people. For example, opponents of the disease want you to know that for every Belizean diagnosed with Type 2 Diabetes another person goes undiagnosed. Reporter Maria Novelo sat down with Vascular Surgeon and Andrologist Vlademir Sarrion who shed some light on things you need to know on this World Diabetes Day.

Screen_Shot_2013-11-14_at_8.31.57_PMMaria Novelo – Reporting

In Belize, statistics in 2012 show that 45 thousand Belizeans are living with diabetes, it raises many concerns because the numbers are rapidly growing. Diabetes knows no race, age, color or creed. It has been dubbed the ‘Silent Killer’ because it can, and does, destroy the major organs in your body; and if left untreated, it will take your life.  


Dr. Vladimir Sarrion – Vascular Surgeon

“Mucho pacientes creen que solamente se elevan la azúcar en la sangre con la diabetes mellitus y no es así van acompañado con otros desordenes el desorden metabolismo de los lípidos en la proteína.  La más conocida son la diabetes tipo uno y tipo dos, la diferencia esencial es que el paciente diabético tipo uno es aquel que nace con la diabetes y que necesariamente para poder sobrevivir y seguir viviendo necesita la utilización de la insulina. El paciente diabético tipo dos es aquel que debuta después de la adultez, después de la mayoría de edad y no necesariamente necesita insulina para su tratamiento hay una gran confusión con esto dos tipos de diabetes, el paciente diabético cuando le incorporan en su tratamiento la insulina creen que son diabéticos tipo uno y no es así o sea el paciente diabético en un momento el tipo dos en un momento de su tratamiento puede llevar insulina no quiere decir que cambia de diabético tipo uno simplemente es asi el diabético tipo uno es el que necesariamente necesita insulina para seguir su funcionamiento normal y el diabético tipo dos no.”

One of the main causes of this disease is lifestyle, coupled with a poor diet, leading to obesity, which in turn is one of the risk factors involved in developing Type 2 diabetes.

Dr. Vladimir Sarrion – Vascular Surgeon

“Vemos diario muchos pacientes diabéticos realmente entre siete y ocho y cuando se toma esto como cifra de acuerdo a la población que maneja el distrito de Orange Walk es in cifra bastante alta sin contar los pacientes que van a otra instituciones de salud a ver otros médicos pero realmente es un problema bastante importante aquí en la población de Belice.”

According to the United Nations Organization; the disease is becoming increasingly prevalent. In Belize, many health care providers are sensitizing the public in an effort to curb the endemic of Diabetes.

Melanie De La Fuente – Pharmacist

“Every Thursday we would have free glucose testing but today was special so we also had the audiologist Dr. Vladimir Sarrion team up with us so that we can give free consultations to all diabetics that came today. We had about thirty patients coming in today who all had their glucose tested, we check their blood pressure, we had slides, the students from the University of Belize Sergio was here helping us, we also had another Pharmacist that work with us Gene Thompson, we spoke to them about knowing the different signs like when they should be alarmed and when they should come to a Doctor do seek medical attention, we spoke about lifestyle changes, diet, exercise, most diabetic feel that they can’t eat a lot of thing but in reality it is just balancing your diet.”       

Serigo Cal– 3rd Year Student Pharmacist

“Basically what we are trying to focus on and trying to explain to the public is that don’t have that conception and perception that having diabetes is death sentence it is up to you and your behalf  to try to help yourself and prolong your life, what we try to do here is to educate the people with the objective of going with primary health care and improving the patient quality of life.”

Dr. Vladimir Sarrion – Vascular Surgeon

“La persona que nazca adonde sus padres sean padres diabéticos o abuelos diabéticos o tíos diabéticos corre el riesgo de ser una persona diabética.  Hay acciones de salud para que las persona no lleguen hacer personas diabéticos, por ejemplo la alimentación adecuada de la vida sana y la realización de ejercicio, el consumo excesivo de alimentos que contengan mucha azúcar puede llevar a un paciente diabético no son la únicas pero son la causas importantes, cuando una persona tiene preposición genética o sea sus familiares han sido diabéticos y la persona puede cuidarse y llevar una vida sana con muchos vegetales eliminar la grasa,  limitar los glúcidos puede que nunca desarrolle una diabetes mellitus sin embargo hay personas que no lo tiene pero por la mala alimentación pueden desarrollar diabetes mellitus.”

It is, therefore, important for each of us to get a diabetes check-up, educate ourselves about the disease, and work actively towards its prevention.

The World Health Organization projects that deaths caused by diabetes will increase by two thirds by 2030. Much of the Diabetes management involves self-care and proper education.  So, if you have it, do what’s necessary in order to keep it under control. And if you don’t, maintain a healthy lifestyle that will help fight it; so even if Diabetes tiptoes through the backdoor, it won’t be a “silent killer” to you.

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