With immunotherapy physicians avoid diabetes complications
What is the difference between the treatment of diabetes under an immune scheme compared to the traditional therapy? The patient gets a diagnosis and receives attention, but is also checked for a systemic immune problem and thereby prevents possible consequences such as diabetic foot, glaucoma, nephropathy and retinopathy.
As long as the immune problem is not considered, diabetes cannot be fully controlled, because these patients have immunodeficiency (decreased defenses) and are more prone to infections, says Sigfrido Miracle Lopez, chief of endocrinology at the Advanced Immunology Center in the Angeles Hospital of Mexico City.
"In the case of Type I diabetes, patients suffer destruction of the pancreas or of the insulin producing cells, but this same patient may have other autoimmune diseases that can affect other organs. This is called autoimmune polyglandular syndrome, a situation in which the body attacks the pancreas, thyroid and may develop hypothyroidism, adrenal insufficiency, or rheumatoid arthritis," he explained.
The Advanced Immunology Center seeks to serve not only patients who have one ailment, but a group of diseases, that can be diagnosed or not, and who are at risk of developing other conditions that can be treated holistically.
When the patient sees the endocrinologist, the physician only focuses on the management of sugar; other diseases that will have repercussions in the future are not being diagnosed in time and get ignored. Therefore, the purpose of attacking diabetes from an immunological point of view is to analyze the entire body and not just the one condition, the endocrinologist says.
In the center, the patient will be evaluated in a comprehensive manner, to detect the autoimmune problem that caused diabetes or further complications. If the patient has further repercussions, treatment will be given to prevent the development of other diseases.
In addition to receiving specific therapy for diabetes, insulin or oral glucose-lowering drugs, patients will receive immunoglobulins and immunoglobulin (antibodies) in infusions to control autoimmune diseases. The therapy works by replacing something the body is not producing in the quantity or quality required.
The center monitors not only the disease, but the individual and all the health factors that could affect the patient, including diabetes and allergies, because this may be the tip of the iceberg of a series of problems, and thus can be prevented to avoid future complications, says Miracle Lopez.