Patients Are a Virtue

Mark 2012Aside from from the new look of Endocrine News in both print and online, we are now actively involved in the social media realm; we’re tweeting every day from @Endocrine_News, and we plan to engage readers on other platforms as well. So far Twitter has not only proven to be an effective means to get the word out, but we have also found story topics, sources, and even contributors for future issues.

If you’re one of our Twitter followers, you no doubt saw the live tweets by associate editor Derek Bagley from the American Association of Diabetes Educators in New Orleans in August. While there, he met Asha Brown and pediatric nurse Marcia Meier, RN, CDE; Brown has type 1 diabetes and had an eating disorder in her youth and Meier manages a program at the Melrose Center in St. Louis Park, Minn., where the two first met. Among the hundreds of AADE attendees milling about them, they discussed the phenomenon of treating diabetes in concert with eating disorders, a malady that is not as rare as you might think. In “A Dangerous Duet,” they give their opinions on the most useful approaches to dealing with these fragile patients, both from the caregiver’s perspective and the patient’s. The bottom line is that physicians with these complicated patients need to be adept at treating both conditions, not just one or the other.

“A Dangerous Duet” is also a new type of article that will find a place more often in the pages of Endocrine News. We feel it’s important to not only get the opinions of those who treat patients but also hear what the patients themselves have to say about their condition, treatments they receive, and more. This is a vital component in the mission of Endocrine News to tell the whole story so our audience can be informed from a number of angles, not just what the literature says or studies have proven. These articles put a human face and real emotions to the conditions endocrinologists have to deal with on a daily basis. If you have a suggestion for such an article, please don’t hesitate to contact me at mnewman@endocrine.org to discuss.

Largely owing to the media frenzy around Olympic champion Bruce Jenner opening up and becoming Caitlyn Jenner, the phenomenon of transgender treatment has been a huge presence over the last few months. In our cover story, “Transitioning,”writer Melissa Mapes discusses how, much like the transgender patients, physicians who treat them are also on a learning curve as this unique condition takes the spotlight. “The good news is that [transgender identity] is pretty easy to treat if you follow the guidelines,” Vin Tangpricha, MD, PhD, associate professor at Emory University in Atlanta, says, adding that, “there are no conflicting recommendations out there and every pharmacy has these hormones.” Endocrinologists, of course, are certainly ready to be a part of history as this new patient population emerges.

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