Diabetes testing at Manacor Hospital.

07-02-2005G. Mas

It started for Howard Mullen nine years ago. Howard, now 69, was driving from Palma to his home in Puerto Pollensa when he realized how tired he was. He was also extraordinarily thirsty all the time. A cut on his finger was taking a long time to heal. Because he was also generally feeling unwell, he visited his doctor.

His doctor said one word - "diabetes".

And with a simple and painless prick of Howard’s finger, the diagnosis was confirmed. In fact, Howard’s blood sugar levels were so high, his doctor immediately sent him to a specialist at hospital. It was that serious.

Diabetes is a dangerous killer. But a silent one. Many people who have it - or are at risk of getting it - are unaware of their conditions. They might, like Howard, feel a little tired or more thirsty than usual.

But unless they’re tested and put on a treatment plan, their very lives are at risk. Diabetes is a global epidemic. Today, 371 million people have been identified as having the condition.

The International Diabetes Federation estimates that by 2030 that number will soar to 552 million. And this doesn’t count the hundreds of thousands - perhaps millions - of people who have the disease but don’t know it. What can you do? Get tested.

It’s a simple and painless prick of your finger. And you can get tested for free on Friday, 14 October, from 10.00 to 13.00 at Tercera Edad de Colonya in Plaza Monares in Pollensa. No need to register or sign up. And it’s completely confidential.

Why get tested? Because with the proper care, you can live a long, healthy, and happy life with diabetes.

Take Howard. By working hand in hand with his doctor, he got on a treatment plan that included insulin injections, pills, healthy eating, and exercise, which brought his blood sugar levels down to normal.

"If you take care of your diabetes, you can have a fabulous life," says Howard, who is an avid photographer and motorcyclist, and hasn’t slowed down one bit in his enjoyment of his life since his diagnosis. "Get tested. You’ll be glad you did."

This free diabetes testing is being sponsored by the North Majorca branch of the Calvia Lions.

Looking for ways to give back to our vibrant community here in the north of Majorca? We are thrilled to announce that Lions International - the world’s largest service organization - is opening a new chapter in Pollensa.

We are actively seeking creative and energetic people to join us in helping those among us who need it most. In giving to others, you’ll discover the true meaning of community. And you’ll make lifelong friends while enriching your daily life.

Contact Susan Mackay for more information: susanpollensa@gmail.com 636 914 425.

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Daver / Hace over 5 years

My daughter was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes at 18 months old. She's now 6 and we count everyday as a blessing. When Grace was ill it was December, It was also 2010, The coldest winter for years. Living in the Highands we simply put it all down to a bad cold. There was no history of diabetes in the family, we had no clue. Thankfully maternal instincts too over and my partner phoned the doctor. Within 30 mins she was in the ambulance and on her way to hospital. This is usually an hours drive away, The anbulance crew did it in 35 mins, I had a hard to keep up in my car. The doctors told us that another hour and we would have lost her. The weather was too bad for an air ambulance, she spent 3 hours travelling by road to Edinburgh's sick kids hospital. After a few days in hdu ( high dependency unit ) she was admitted to a ward. Two days later, through thick snow and a car with a broken window, I picked up Grace and my partner. She now has an insulin pump, We self fund a sensor in her arm so that we don't have to prick her little fingers 10 times a day. She loves her holidays in Alcudia and especially the pool. It could have been so different. Get the finger prick done, Get your blood checked. It takes seconds but could save your life.

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