American Diabetes Association

30 N. Michigan Ave., #2015
Chicago, IL 60602
312-346-5342 Fax

The mission of the American Diabetes Association is to prevent and cure diabetes and to improve the lives of all people affected by diabetes.

Facts and Statistics
As of 2002, 6.3% of the American population has diabetes

Diabetes is the fifth-deadliest disease in the United States, and it has no cure.

Approximately one in every 400 to 500 children and adolescents has type 1 diabetes.

Health Tips
Often diabetes goes undiagnosed because many of its symptoms seem so harmless. Recent studies indicate that the early detection of diabetes symptoms and treatment can decrease the chance of developing the complications of diabetes.

Some diabetes symptoms include:

Frequent urination

Excessive thirst

Extreme hunger

Unusual weight loss

Increased fatigue


Blurry vision

Fundraising & Administrative Percentage

Recently, Marilyn Nguyen, Associate in Constituent Relations (ADA's National Call Center), received a phone call from a newly diagnosed individual experiencing her first self-test with a push-button lancet device.

This call was different. Marilyn knew it when the first thing she heard the caller say was, "I can't do it." When Marilyn asked the caller what it was that she could not do, she learned that the woman had just been diagnosed with diabetes, and had been informed by her doctor that she was to perform blood glucose tests. There was one problem. The woman was deathly afraid of needles. "So afraid," Marilyn said, "that she had a phobia of them. Not just needles � lancets and sharps of any kind." The woman continued to tell Marilyn that she had all of her supplies laid out in front of her, but announced uneasily, "I just can't push the button."

As Marilyn attempted to calm the caller down, she heard the fear in the woman's voice. "It was obvious she was nervous on the phone, because her voice was really shaky." Marilyn remembers. "She told me she felt like she was being a big baby. I reassured her, telling her it was okay, and that it's something new, something she has to get used to. I explained that once she gets used to testing her own blood, it'll be like any other normal routine she is doing � brushing her teeth or dressing." Hearing the panic in the woman's voice, Marilyn asked if she had anyone to help her. "She told me her sister was on the way, but didn't want to do it in front of her sister, because her sister would think she was 'a big baby'."

Marilyn continued to encourage her, "I told her 'you can do it. You can push the button. Because I have faith in you'. And I really did. I really felt it, and wouldn't have said it if it wasn't true." Suddenly, the woman said, "Say it again." Marilyn was a bit confused, and asked, "Say what again?" "Say, 'press the button' again", the woman responded. Obediently, Marilyn said, "Press the button."

An audible "I did it!" came from the other end of the line. Marilyn asked her caller if she pressed the button, and her hopes were confirmed. "We were both so excited, I felt like popping a champagne bottle!" said Marilyn. "I felt as if we both had reached a mountaintop. We both accomplished this fearful task, one fearful for most people. I helped bring her a step closer in managing her diabetes. I'll never forget her victory." Marilyn reflected, followed by "You know why? Because it was mine as well."



307 N Michigan Ave, Ste 800  |  Chicago, Illinois 60601  |  312.360.0382  |  Toll-Free: 800.299.6842  |  Fax: 312.360.0388  |  Email