Do you live with diabetes? Here’s what one local expert wants you to know in light of COVID-19

Coronavirus

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WROC) — Experts say people living with diabetes could be at risk for more severe COVID-19 symptoms.

“We’re not absolutely sure if it makes people more predisposed to getting the infection with diabetes,” said Dr. Michael Quartuccio, an endocrinologist with Rochester Regional Health. “But we know when they do, they get a more serious infection. Most of that centers around the immune system’s not working quite as well as it should be.”

Quartuccio said people living with diabetes should do a few things while at home: maintain a healthy diet, exercise, take proper medication and, importantly, keep track of glucose levels.

“It’s not uncommon – sometimes people with diabetes, especially on insulin, might occasionally see a glucose in the 200s, when they’re normally under good control. If they’re consistently and persistently elevated, that could be a sign of infection,” said Quartuccio.

Quartuccio also encouraged people living with diabetes to write down their glucose levels.

Bradley Martin, a University of Rochester student, lives with Type-1 diabetes. Martin, like his UR classmates, is currently taking his classes online at home.

“I have not really left the house at all, especially because I know how dangerous it is if I were to get the virus,” said Martin.

Martin, who lives in the Syracuse area, is a member of the College Diabetes Network at the University of Rochester, a club which connects students living with diabetes.

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