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Impact of Ramadan focused education program on hypoglycemic risk and metabolic control for patients with type 2 diabetes

Authors Tourkmani A, Hassali MA, Alharbi T, Alkhashan H, Alobaikan A, Bkhiet A, Alqahtani H, Alrasheedy A, Alawwad A, Mishriky A, Aljadhey H

Received 21 May 2016

Accepted for publication 28 June 2016

Published 6 September 2016 Volume 2016:10 Pages 1709—1717


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 2

Editor who approved publication: Dr Johnny Chen

Ayla M Tourkmani,1 Mohamed Azmi Hassali,2 Turki J Alharbi,1 Hesham I Alkhashan,1 Aljoharah H Alobikan,1 Ahmed H Bakhiet,1 Hala B Alqahtani,1 Alian A Alrasheedy,3 Ahmed D Alawwad,1 Adel M Mishriky,1 Hisham Aljadhey4

1Family and Community Medicine Department, Prince Sultan Military Medical City, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia; 2Discipline of Social and Administrative Pharmacy, School of Pharmaceutical Sciences, Universiti Sains Malaysia, Penang, Malaysia; 3Department of Pharmacy Practice, Unaizah College of Pharmacy, Qassim University, Qassim Saudi Arabia; 4Medication Safety Research Chair, College of Pharmacy, King Saud University, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Background: Fasting during the month of Ramadan could lead to acute complications and increased hypoglycemic risk of patients with type 2 diabetes. Therefore, diabetes is one of the diseases that need careful observation and special considerations during Ramadan including patients’ education and counseling.
Objectives: To evaluate the impact of Ramadan focused education program on acute complications and biomedical parameters.
Methods: A prospective nonrandomized interventional controlled design was run on three phases: before, during, and after Ramadan on 262 type 2 diabetes patients. The intervention group (n=140) received focused individualized diabetic education sessions and antidiabetic medications adjustment before and after Ramadan, while the control group (n=122) received standard diabetic care. A validated hypoglycemia questionnaire was used in both groups to assess the change of the risk. Patients were advised to adjust the dosage and timing of antidiabetic agents according to the recommendations for management of diabetes during Ramadan. Primary outcomes were postintervention change of hypoglycemia score and HbA1c over 6-month follow-up. Data were presented as mean ± standard deviation. HbA1c was expressed in percentage.
Results: The hypoglycemic scores before, during, and after Ramadan were 14.21±8.50, 6.36±6.17, and 5.44±5.55 in the intervention group, respectively (P<0.001) and 14.01±5.10, 13.46±5.30, and 9.27±4.65 in the control group, respectively (P<0.001). HbA1c levels were 9.79±1.89, 8.26±1.54, and 8.52±1.61 before, during, and after Ramadan in the intervention group, respectively (P<0.001), and 10.04±1.47, 9.54±1.38, and 9.59±1.79 in the control group, respectively (P<0.001). Post-Ramadan reductions of HbA1c and hypoglycemic scores were significantly higher in the intervention group (-13.0% vs -4.5%, P=0.004 for HbA1c and -61.7% vs -33.8%, P<0.001 for hypoglycemic score). Low-density lipoprotein cholesterol improved in the intervention group from 2.41±0.91 mmol/L before Ramadan to 2.28±0.68 mmol/L after Ramadan (P<0.001). No statistically significant effects were observed on blood pressure or body weight in the intervention group. Also, no change was observed in the control group.
Conclusion: Ramadan educational program had a positive impact with reduction of hypoglycemic risk, HbA1c, and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol. Therefore, it could be recommended for patients with increased risk of hypoglycemia during Ramadan fasting.

Keywords: complications, diabetes, fasting, Saudi Arabia

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