Cookies on this website

We use cookies to ensure that we give you the best experience on our website. If you click 'Accept all cookies' we'll assume that you are happy to receive all cookies and you won't see this message again. If you click 'Reject all non-essential cookies' only necessary cookies providing core functionality such as security, network management, and accessibility will be enabled. Click 'Find out more' for information on how to change your cookie settings.

Research led by scientists from the Universities of Oxford and Edinburgh has found that early good blood glucose control can minimise the lifetime risk of diabetes-related complications, including heart attacks, kidney failure and vision loss.

woman's hand using a lancing device for blood test

These latest results from the UK Prospective Diabetes Study (UKPDS), one of the longest ever clinical trials in type 2 diabetes, were made feasible by incorporating NHS data.

Professor Rury Holman of Oxford's Radcliffe Department of Medicine, the founding Director of the University of Oxford Diabetes Trials Unit and Chief Investigator of the UKPDS, said, ‘These remarkable findings emphasise the critical importance of detecting and treating type 2 diabetes intensively at the earliest possible opportunity.

‘People may have type 2 diabetes for several years before being diagnosed as they may have few symptoms until their blood sugars become substantially elevated.’

20-year trial led to worldwide guideline changes in blood glucose control

Starting in 1977, the UKPDS randomly allocated people with newly diagnosed type 2 diabetes to an intensive blood glucose control strategy with sulfonylureas, insulin, or metformin, or to a conventional blood glucose control strategy, primarily with diet.

The 20-year trial results, published in 1998, showed that good blood glucose control reduced the risk of diabetic complications. Worldwide, UKPDS changed guidelines to recommend intensive blood glucose control for everyone with type 2 diabetes.


Read the full story on the University of Oxford website.