Telegraph numbers….

The number of diagnoses of type 2 diabetes has fallen in an ‘encouraging’ sign, the charity Diabetes UK has said. Although three people are still being diagnosed every three minutes the equivalent of 552 cases per day, it is 27 cases fewer each day than in 2016 when there were 579 every 24 hours, nearly one person every two minutes.

That’ll be one person every three minutes then, not three.

30 thoughts on “Telegraph numbers….”

  1. How is that ‘encouraging’? Very few of the people who were diagnosed previously will have been cured of their ailment. So every new diagnosis just adds to the pile of people with that illness. Its like people who say ‘The budget deficit is falling!’, forgetting that the overall debt amount is still rising…..

  2. Well, duh, Lourdes cases aside you can’t cure chronic diseases. If you could they would no longer be chronic diseases but curable diseases, wouldn’t they.

    And of course a drop in the rate of diagnosis of a chronic disease is a good thing, for the people who have now not got said disease and can instead succumb to some competing risk. Duh.

  3. When the numbers of new diagnoses drops below the number of remissions, *that* will be encouraging.

  4. How useful is the number of diagnoses per day?

    How relevant would it be to find out by how much the threshold of blood glucose has changed for a diagnosis and how many non-symptomatic patients are found because everyone is being tested now at that low threshold? Two people in my immediate circle were told they had diabetes on the strength of a non-fasting blood test and subsequently were found to be normal. Were they counted or not?

    This has a slight whiff of an NHS shroud-waving exercise.

  5. So you don’t have type 2 diabetes unless it has been diagnosed?

    Could the 552 who are going to be diagnosed tomorrow be better off it they were diagnosed today? There are many thousands with type 2 diabetes who won’t be diagnosed until next year.

    The NHS ability to diagnose type 2 diabetes has decreased 5%.

    It’s all fun with numbers. I think what this is really about is Diabetes UK getting headlines. It’s not about diabetes at all.

  6. Are testing the same number of people? Has the typical person being tested changed in any way from last year? Has publicity stampeded people to get tested who otherwise have very low risk?

  7. I know the general assembly here leans towards skepticism of the very existence of diabetes, in the way Africans lean towards skepticism of AIDS, but I would hazard the guess (and am happy to be corrected if wrong) that Tim’s real point is that the Tellygraph has managed to describe what should be a straightforward comparison in no fewer than four ways*.

    In so doing it has made a total hash of what should be a straighforward report, even before getting to considerations of how accurate the numbers are.

    The only things missing to make it a truly complete scientific report are the number of Wembley Stadiums the diagnosed would fill per year, how many days of diagnoses are needed to fill Wembley Stadium, and how many times the area of Wales their back gardens add up to.

    *: number per day, number per 24 hours (why distinguish from a day), mean time between diagnoses, and absolute difference in number of daily diagnoses.

  8. NHS GPs are paid per diabetes diagnosis they make. Maybe the numbers are an early sign of a spiritual awakening among GPs, who are deciding that they should look after the health of their patients rather than cynically maximising their own income.

    In the next episode of this show, politicians will stop pursuing office.

  9. Personally, I like the “number of Hiroshima bombs” metric, though it can’t be used here.

    True, BiG, Tim was commenting on the maths mashup. Most of us were commenting on the characterization “encouraging.” Not enough info is given to determine whether it is encouraging or not. I assume the science/health reporter is too ignorant of science/health to know there is even a problem. Their job is just to punch up press releases, often resulting in a mashups.

  10. Bloke in North Dorset

    They should have added the number who die from/with T2 to give us a real measure of what’s going on.

  11. For the record, type 2 diabetes is entirely curable and preventable simply by changing diet.

  12. ‘For the record, type 2 diabetes is entirely curable and preventable simply by changing diet.’

    You drag a needle across the record.

    It is NOT curable, and the cause is UNKNOWN.

    Your assertion is junk science.

  13. @ wat dabney
    Not always (albeit often).
    There’s a guy I fairly frequently race against who habitually beats me and has “late onset diabetes”: he takes great care of his diet and enough exercise. He tells me that there is a spectrum from Type 1 to Type 2 diabetes and the latter is not always reversible/curable.
    You need to insert “usually” into your comment.

  14. @ BiG
    My brother-in-law contracted Type 1 Diabetes aged 22, so I *do* believe in diabetes.
    Secondly Tim’s point is that the stupid journalist has said “three every three minutes” instead of “one every three minutes” – an easy mistype with thought and speech running faster than one’s typing speed but the sort of thing that sub-editors are hired to spot and correct.

  15. “Not always (albeit often).”

    You are as big a fool as Dabney. The cause is unknown; it is not curable.

  16. @ Gamecock
    Type 2 diabetes is sometimes reversible – it must be because it *has* been reversed. The cause of diabetes is a failure of the pancreas to produce the right amount of insulin. That IS known.
    You can keep shouting until you are hoarse but facts are facts and you cannot change them.

  17. Bloke in North Dorset

    I don’t know about curing T2, but you can certainly alleviate the symptoms. My brother recently had one of his big toes amputated and he’s been told that unless he losses weight and changes his diet that’s only the start.

    I’ve seen people change their diet and the big horrible red blodges they get on their legs went away.

  18. @John77 ” The cause of diabetes is a failure of the pancreas to produce the right amount of insulin. That IS known”


    ‘Your pancreas makes a hormone called insulin. It’s what lets your cells turn glucose from the food you eat into energy. People with type 2 diabetes make insulin, but their cells don’t use it as well as they should.’

    John, I’m not hoarse yet, but you are still an idiot.

  19. A disease is said to be cured if there is no chance of the patient relapsing.

    With T2D, you can (often) remove the symptoms with diet and exercise, but the symptoms will likely return if you revert to indulgence and sloth.

    Thus, T2D currently treatable but not curable.

  20. @ Gamecock
    Of course you can make me look silly IF you misquote what I said.
    “the right amount of insulin”
    Go back and READ it

  21. @john 77

    I went back and I re-read your post, guess what, you’re still wrong. Diabetes is the failure of the body to regulate blood sugars. This can be due to lack of insulin production or the body being unable to use the insulin correctly. And there are multiple causes for both.

  22. @ steve lindsey
    Have you read “cause of”? (in “the cause of diabetes is …”).
    You say “diabetes is …” and I am wrong because I did not say that?!?
    I pointed out to wat dabney that Type 2 diabetes is not always reversible by diet changes and I get Gamecock attacking me for not following his party line that Type 2 diabetes is incurable and the cause is unknown when cures have been observed. It would be more tolerable if you attacked what I actually said: I don’t pretend to be a physician just an independent observer of reality.

  23. ‘I get Gamecock attacking me for not following his party line that Type 2 diabetes is incurable and the cause is unknown when cures have been observed.’

    Removing the stomach is a cure. Got anything better, dumbass?

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