The last 90 years have seen considerable advances in the management of type 1 and type 2 diabetes. Prof MacLean of Guy’s Hospital wrote in the Postgraduate Medical Journal in 1926 about the numerous challenges that faced patients and their healthcare professionals in delivering safe and effective diabetes care at that time.
The discovery of insulin in 1922 heralded a new age in enabling long-term glycaemic control, which reduced morbidity and mortality. Thirty years later, the first oral agents for diabetes, the biguanides and sulfonylureas, appeared and freed type 2 patients from having to inject insulin following diagnosis.
Improvements in insulin formulations over the decades, including rapid-acting and long-acting insulin analogues that more closely mimic physiological insulin secretion, have increased the flexibility and efficacy of type 1 diabetes management.
Read the full PMJ Editor’s choice review based on the talk by Professor Melanie Davies at the Symposium to mark the 90th Anniversary of the Postgraduate Medical Journal.