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13 September 2011 11:49
Diabetes patients should view a recent study on in-flight use of insulin pumps with scepticism, an expert says
A medical expert has cast doubts on recent claims that air passengers with diabetes may end up injecting the wrong amount of insulin because of pressure changes inside a plane.
A recent study published in the peer-reviewed Diabetes Technology & Therapeutics journal reported that insulin pumps when used in conditions of changing atmospheric pressure may end up delivering incorrect levels of the hormone.
Research simulated aircraft conditions within a hypobaric chamber, with a small number of type 1 diabetes patients participating in the experiment.
In an editorial published in the journal, Irl B Hirsch, a professor at the University of Washington School of Medicine said the data was not sufficient to draw such broad conclusions.
The findings could potentially explain why patients who use the pumps see changes in their blood glucose levels, but variations in insulin amounts delivered during the simulation tests were only marginal, he said.
It is advisable for diabetes sufferers to take out a
medical travel insurance and take good care while travelling, but Dr Hirsch says it would be unwise to panic about using insulin pumps in-flight based on the small-scale research.
"This study was implemented in such a small number of people that large conclusions may not be justified... It is possible the authors overreacted in their recommendations," he said.
27 September 2016
Monarch Airlines says its flights are operating as normal amid fears the firm is in financial trouble.
24 September 2016
Slim people who look physically healthy may still be at increased chance of being diagnosed with bowel cancer if they have raised insulin levels, according new research.
23 September 2016
Theresa May is being urged to give the go-ahead for flights to resume between the UK and Sharm el-Sheikh by the head of the cross-party parliamentary group on Egypt.
22 September 2016
Budget airline Jet2.com is to open its first base in the south of England at Stansted.
21 September 2016
Smoking rates have dropped to the lowest level on record in England, new figures show, suggesting messages about the health effects of cigarettes are hitting home.
20 September 2016
Concerns have been raised over flight disruptions caused by heavy drinking among passengers.
17 September 2016
British Airways' decision to launch direct flights from London to Tehran earlier this month positions Iran as one of the hottest destinations to visit in 2017, according to experts.
16 September 2016
More than 100 flights have been cancelled as French air traffic controllers go on strike again.
15 September 2016
Two thirds of MPs would support an expansion at Heathrow.
14 September 2016
TripAdvisor is launching a new homepage, making the booking of holiday activities and tours even easier.
13 September 2016
Travellers are to be charged to use fast lanes to get through passport checks in an attempt to cut queues.
09 September 2016
People travelling to regions affected by the Zika virus outbreak should practise safe sex for at least half a year upon their return, health leaders say.