New data presented recently at the Diabetes UK Professional Conference shows gaps in patients’ understanding about the potential side effects of treatments for type 2 diabetes, such as hypoglycaemia The MSD-funded survey of 1,012 people with type 2 diabetes was carried out by pharmacists across the UK with patients collecting a prescription for the type 2 diabetes medication, sulphonylurea (SU). Results showed that over a third (38%) of respondents do not confidently understand the side effects of their diabetes medicine, one of which is hypoglycaemia, often mistaking side effects for the actual disease. According to the survey, half (50%) of those surveyed had suffered a hypoglycaemic episode within the last year, of whom 32% reported an episode within the previous two months; 17% had called the emergency services to treat this, and 17% had been admitted to hospital. Yet only a third (36%) of people stated they could identify the symptoms of a mild hypoglycaemic episode such as trembling and shakiness, and just one quarter (24%) of participants could recognise symptoms of a severe episode.