Kidney disease a serious complication for those with type 2

A new survey has revealed that Australians living with type 2 diabetes are unaware of the severe impact of complications like chronic kidney disease and heart failure.

More education and support is needed for Australians living with type 2 diabetes on the threat posed by complications.

  • One in two people with diabetes will develop chronic kidney disease, yet, a staggering 40% of people with diabetes do not know or are unsure of what the condition is.
  • In addition 20% of people living with type 2 diabetes do not know or are unsure of what heart failure

Diabetes complications

In response, Diabetes Australia has launched the ‘If I Had Known’ campaign to raise awareness about type 2 diabetes, and the fact many people do not realise the serious and potentially fatal complications associated with the condition.

The campaign coincides with a new national survey of 1,000 Australians living with type 2 diabetes commissioned by Diabetes Australia and Kidney Health Australia.

One in two people with diabetes will go on to develop chronic kidney disease. The new research demonstrates that 40% of people who live with type 2 diabetes are unaware of what chronic kidney disease is.

Similarly, Australians who live with diabetes are more than 28% more likely to die from heart failure, and yet the new research found that 20% don’t know what heart failure is.

Type 2 diabetes impacts 1.2 million Australians, but only a third of the general community admit to being worried about developing the condition.

‘If I Had Known’ campaign

Diabetes Australia, CEO, Greg Johnson says the ‘If I Had Known’ campaign is a reminder for all Australians, especially people living with type 2 diabetes, to be aware of the serious complications of the condition.

“This campaign gives a voice to real people, impacted by type 2 diabetes to share their experiences of living with the condition and its complications,” said Professor Johnson.

“Our research shows the need for a greater focus on educating and supporting people about the seriousness of the condition and the need to act early. Get the right support and manage the condition, to reduce the risk of complications down the track.”

“Australians living with type 2 diabetes face many barriers to best managing their condition. This can include lack of information about the seriousness of the condition – and that is why we are launching ‘If I Had Known’ today.

The campaign aims to inspire action, and help people living with type 2 diabetes to be proactive in seeking treatment and the optimal healthcare team for their individual needs,” Professor Johnson continued.

Chronic kidney disease

‘If I Had Known’ follows the launch of Kidney Health Australia’s recent #nofilter campaign. This campaign highlights the realities of living with end-stage kidney disease. A fatal complication of type 2 diabetes.

The #nofilter campaign provided an unfiltered look at life with kidney failure to encourage Australians to understand and check their risk factors for chronic kidney disease, such as diabetes, and seek a kidney health check from their GP.

“It’s worrying to hear that less than half of people living with type 2 diabetes recognise chronic kidney disease as a complication, despite diabetes being the leading cause of chronic kidney disease.

Through our #nofilter campaign, and supporting Diabetes Australia’s campaign, we hope to educate more Australians about the risk of chronic kidney disease, and that if caught early enough, progression of the disease can be slowed or even stopped,” says Chris Forbes, CEO, Kidney Health Australia.

Personal experience of diabetes complications

The ‘If I Had Known’ campaign’ features real stories from people talking about what they wish they had known about type 2 diabetes. The campaign encourages people to engage with their diabetes health team as soon as they are diagnosed with type 2 diabetes and throughout their care. If the condition isn’t well managed, it can lead to serious complications.

If you already live with type 2 diabetes, you should have a Kidney Health Check every year as well as regular heart health checks.

To find out more about Diabetes Australia’s ‘If I Had Known’, follow the link here.

To find out more about Kidney Health Australia’s #nofilter campaign, follow the link here.

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