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Treating Diabetes: No more needles

It's been the elusive cure, one that scientists have felt they've been on the brink of breaking for the past 80 years. But for years, diabetes has remained a treatable but not yet cured disease. In fact, diabetes is the leading cause of death by disease in Canada. Banting and Best are Canada's best known connection to diabetes but the Canadian connection continues. Since the historic discovery of insulin, there have been improvements and refinements. The promise of a cure for all, however, remains as yet unfulfilled, leaving many to live highly regimented and uncertain lives.

Eight-year-old Scott Lowns is enjoying his improved independence, flexibility and freedom thanks to a new device - the diabetic pump. The small device replaces needles and provides a continuous infusion of insulin into the body. For Lowns, who used to have to take four needles a day and experienced high blood sugar spikes, the device could also prevent further insulin-related complications in the future. The newest breakthrough in insulin delivery is described in this CBC Television report.
. The insulin pump remains a popular option for people having difficulty controlling their blood glucose levels. In 2003, the pump cost approximately $5100.
. In 1944 a standard insulin syringe was introduced to the Canadian market. The syringe made it easier for diabetics to measure and administer uniform amounts of insulin.

. The insulin pen, released in 1986, allowed diabetics to administer insulin easily and accurately. The pen-like device has a needle on the end which releases insulin into the skin through a tiny burst of pressure.
Medium: Television
Program: Saturday Evening News
Broadcast Date: Nov. 15, 1980
Guest(s): Scott Lowns
Reporter: Barbara Trueman
Duration: 2:33

Last updated: January 14, 2013

Page consulted on December 6, 2013

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