Researchers at the University of Tennessee Health Science Center may have discovered a better way to treat burn victims. As burn victims recover, they often suffer from a condition referred to as the “diabetes of trauma,” where the body cannot properly regulate its level of blood sugar. However, a study by Sherry Kasper of the UTHSC’s Graduate School of Medicine has discovered a link between burn-related diabetes and problems with the renin-angiotension system (which regulates blood pressure).
About 70% of serious burn victims develop an insulin resistance attributed to elevated levels of glucose and insulin in their blood. Later studies hope to help reverse this condition, which will reduce mortality rates, time spent in intensive care units, and rates of infection for these patients.