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Library - Spotlight on diabetes

Edel Reynolds from the INMO library team outlines current literature resources on Diabetes Mellitus

Diabetes Mellitus is fast becoming a worldwide epidemic and its prevalence is growing steadily in Ireland. In 2009, one in 20 Irish people had type 2 diabetes and recent research indicates that one in three Irish people have a family member with diabetes.1 Occurrence of type 1 diabetes is also on the rise, although at a much slower pace than that of type 2.

With the prevalence so high, nurses and midwives will be required to care for patients with diabetes numerous times throughout their career in the acute setting, in the community and also in primary care. In this month’s library review, we provide an overview of current articles on diabetes care and guidelines for the management of diabetes.

The National Diabetes Programme was established in June 2010 under the Clinical Strategy and Programmes Directorate. In 2011, funding was received to establish a national multidisciplinary foot care service for people with diabetes.

Model of Care for the Diabetic Foot
The HSE (2011) ‘Model of Care for the Diabetic Foot’ states that diabetic foot disease is one of the most common complications of the condition. It is also one of the most costly. In 2008 alone, lower limb ulcers accounted for 23,601 bed days while lower leg amputations accounted for 11,622 bed days. Screening of risk can lead to a reduction in incidence.

This HSE model divides risk into low, moderate and high risk as well as a category for active diabetic foot disease. The foot screening process is explained and the examinations needed for each risk category are listed.

Office of the Nursing and Midwifery Guidelines
The Office of the Nursing and Midwifery Services Director (2010) ‘Guidelines for the Management of Pre-gestational and Gestational Diabetes Mellitus from Pre- Conception to Postnatal Period’ outline best practice for managing women with pre-existing diabetes. It also outlines best practice for those at risk of developing or who develop gestational diabetes, in order to minimise adverse effects on the mother and infant.

Recommendations for care are given as well as guidance for each trimester. There are separate chapters for type 1, type 2 and gestational diabetes.

Starting injectable treatment
The RCN (2012) ‘Starting injectable treatment in adults with Type 2 Diabetes‘ guide is aimed at nurses who are new to injectable therapy. An overview is given of how injectable therapies work and the guide explains who can benefit from insulin therapy and glucagon-like peptide 1 (GLP 1) therapy. Advice is given on choosing the right therapy for the patient and how to deal with problems and challenges that may occur.

Forum for Injection Technique (FIT)
The FIT (2012) ‘Diabetes Care in Ireland – The First Irish Injection Technique Recommendations’ set out to establish and promote best practice for injection technique in diabetes care. The recommendations are categorised into 17 areas, among them challenges associated with administering injections, injection site care, correct use of syringes, absorption rates and needle lengths.

FIT courses are currently run in the INMO. For details contact the INMO Professional Development Centre, Tel: 01 664 0641/2.

Useful articles
Yarwood-Ross, Lee; Randall, Sue; Primary Health Care, 2013 Feb; 23 (1): 16-20. Managing a Patient’s Diabetic Foot Ulcer

This article uses a case study to illustrate the positive impact of having access to a specialist service for a patient with a foot ulcer.

Blanchfield, Denise; McGurk, Colm; Journal of Diabetes Nursing, 2012; 16 (3): 116-21 Nurse-led diabetes and renal impairment clinics: Challenging traditional care boundaries in Ireland

Based on the Carlow/Kilkenny diabetes service, this article outlines how the advanced nurse practitioner role combines elements from the disciplines of medicine and nursing to meet service needs and achieve clinical targets and low patient default rates.

Kime, Nicky; Young people with type 1 diabetes and their transition to adult services. British Journal of Community Nursing, 2013; 18 (1): 14-8

This article focuses on the results of a research study that examined the transition of young people with type 1 diabetes from child to adult services and looks at the role of community nurses in young peoples’ diabetes care.

The library holds the journal Diabetes Professional, a quarterly publication aimed at healthcare professionals including articles on diet, lifestyle and the latest treatment developments.

To request the full text of any of the articles mentioned above, or for more information on library services, please Tel: 01 6640614/25; email: library@inmo.ie; or visit our website www.nurse2nurse.ie


  1. FIT (2012) Diabetes Care in Ireland – The First Irish Injection Technique Recommendations
Library - Spotlight on diabetes
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Irish Nurses & Midwives Organisation (Cumann Altrai agus Ban Cabhrach na hEireann). The Whitworth Building, North Brunswick Street, Dublin 7. T:+353 1 664 0600 E:inmo@inmo.ie