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AJN On the Cover

Fergenson, Michael Senior Editorial Coordinator

AJN, American Journal of Nursing: July 2014 - Volume 114 - Issue 7 - p 14
doi: 10.1097/01.NAJ.0000451662.08137.73
AJN On the Cover

On our cover this month, 17-year-old Trenton Jantzi tests his blood sugar on the sidelines before football practice. First diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in 2011, the Oregon teenager remembers wondering how his life was going to change. “I was scared, but I was thinking I might as well start living with it now,” Trenton said in a recent interview with a local newspaper. “I was never at that stage where [I thought], ‘My life's over.’” Trenton is an active athlete who plays three sports, football, basketball, and baseball, and he says that nothing about his diagnosis gets in his way. He doesn't let multiple daily blood-sugar checks, maintenance of his insulin pump, or the fact that he will have to be connected to a supply of insulin for the rest of his life define him. As his mother says, “Diabetes isn't who he is. It's what he has.”

Trenton is one of a growing number of children and adolescents in the United States who have been diagnosed with diabetes in recent years. According to a study in JAMA, from 2001 to 2009 the prevalence of type 1 and type 2 diabetes grew by 21% and by more than 30%, respectively, in this population. Teens with diabetes soon learn that both the physical and the psychological aspects of puberty—from having higher insulin requirements to having a risk of lower self-esteem—will affect the management of this disease. For more on the challenges adolescents face in managing diabetes, see this month's CE feature, “Diabetes and Puberty: A Glycemic Challenge.”—Michael Fergenson, senior editorial coordinator

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