GP Voice

voice of general practice

SGLT2 inhibitors and the diabetic kidney – friend or foe?

26th May 2019, Dr Chee L Khoo

Sometimes when a drug is contraindicated for patients with low eGFR, it may mean that usage of the drug may further damage the kidneys or increase the risk of certain adverse events. For example, the use of metformin in patients with eGFR <30 significantly increase the risk of lactic acidosis. Usage of lithium in patients with impaired renal function (low eGFR) may further damage the kidneys.…

Breakfast – how important is it?

23rd April, 2019, Dr Chee L Khoo

Somehow, it has been drummed into us, as doctors and consumers, that breakfast is the most important meal of the day. What does that even mean? As discerning scientists, we should seek to clarify what outcome measures they are referring to when they say, “the most important meal of the day”. We should also question what type of breakfast they are referring to and the subjects recruited in the studies.…

Insulin-GLP1 agonist combo – two heads better than one

23rd March 2019, Dr Chee L Khoo

American Diabetes Association (ADA) and the European Association for the Study of Diabetes (EASD) suggest that if HbA1c targets are not achieved despite the addition of basal insulin in type 2 diabetes (T2D), treatment could also be further advanced by the addition of a glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonist (GLP-1 RA). The addition of a GLP1-RA has been shown to be as efficacious as the addition of a prandial insulin in patients with T2D who is not at glycaemic target despite the addition of basal insulin therapy (1).…

Diabetes management after bariatric surgery – which medication to continue

14th March 2018, Dr Chee L Khoo

Bariatric/metabolic surgery is an effective strategy to attain diabetes remission in obese patients. Significant and rapid weight loss by any means will improve insulin sensitivity, the internal glucotoxicity and lipotoxicity. Bariatric surgery, in particular, is thought to also lead to changes in gut incretins and neurotransmitters, improvement of hepatic and peripheral insulin sensitivity, altered bile acid metabolism and gut microbiota that are independent of weight loss.…

Do all fat kids develop diabetes? If not, who does?

27th January 2019, Dr Chee L Khoo

As GPs we often see little kids already carrying extra weight and we know that many of these will go on to become overweight or obese adults. Many overweight kids and overweight adults will go on to develop type 2 diabetes. Interestingly, some obese kids don’t go on to become diabetic. Which subsets of these overweight kids don’t go on to develop diabetes?…

Fasting glucose – is it still relevant when managing patients with T2D?

27th January 2019, Dr Chee L Khoo

It’s tempting to rely too much on HbA1c when managing our patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D). It is not uncommon to come across patients with pretty optimal HbA1c (under 6.5-7.0%) and we pat them on the back with the message “well done”. Often, the fasting glucose levels is just glossed over. Should we even bother with the fasting glucose levels at all these days?…

Ertugliflozin – now we are three again

13th December 2018, Dr Chee L Khoo

Sodium-glucose cotransporter 2 (SGLT2) inhibitors are the latest therapeutic strategy in the treatment of type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM). They feature prominently in the latest international diabetes management guidelines. They not only improve glycaemic control but recent clinical trials demonstrated cardiovascular protection, combined with a reduction in body weight and blood pressure. There used to be three SGLT2 inhibitors, dapagliflozin, empagliflozin and canagliflozin until canagliflozin withdrew from the Australian market.…

The Diabetic Heart – the dawn of the myocardium

27th November, 2018, Dr Chee L Khoo

Of the patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D) who die from cardiovascular (CV) disease, 40% die from IHD, 15% die from heart failure and 15% die from strokes. Patients with T2D have greater atherosclerotic plaque burden, higher atheroma volume, and smaller coronary artery lumen diameter than persons without diabetes. Numerous processes contribute to atherosclerotic cardiovascular disease (ASCVD) in diabetes including (but not limited to) hyperglycaemia, insulin resistance and/or hyperinsulinemia, dyslipidaemia, inflammation, reactive oxygen species, endothelial dysfunction, hypercoagulability, and vascular calcification.…

Diabetes Management – GPs as good as Diabetes Centres!

13th November 2018, Dr Chee L Khoo

70-80% of patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D) are managed in primary care in Australia. Patients managed in hospital based outpatients have the advantage of multi-disciplinary team care. They have dietitians, credentialled diabetes educator (CDE), physiotherapists and of course, the endocrinologist in the team. On the other hand, we, as GPs, have the advantage of knowing our patients and their families’ social environment.…

Twincretins – are two incretins better than one?

29th October 2018, Dr Chee L Khoo

Incretins are hormones released when we eat. They augment the release of insulin from pancreatic beta cells. They not only lead to reduction in blood glucose levels via the secretion of insulin, they also inhibit glucagon release thereby stemming further hyperglycaemia, slow the absorption of nutrients by slowing gastric emptying and increase satiety. The two main incretin hormones are glucagon like peptide -1 (GLP1) and gastric inhibitory peptides (GIP).…

GLP1 agonists – are you up-to-date with them?

28th October 2018, Dr Chee L Khoo

There are now 7 glucagon like peptide 1 (GLP 1) injectable analogues used to control hyperglycaemia in patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D). An eighth GLP1 analogue is now available as an oral form. Only four of them are available in Australia of which three are on the PBS under authority prescription (Byetta, Bydureon, Trulicity).…

Guidelines, guidelines and guidelines – the secret to keeping up to date

30th September, 2018, Dr Chee L Khoo

One of the many challenges in general practice is keeping up with new management guidelines. Another week another guideline somewhere. Even if you are made aware of the existence of those guidelines and have access to them, the guidelines are usually 150-200 pages long. Even the executive summary runs into half a dozen pages.…

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