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NGDOC partners with OOUTH and Penpals United to initiate support group for Nigerian CWDs


The Nigeria Diabetes Online Community in collaboration with The Pediatric Endocrinology department of the Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital partnered with Penpals United – an organization that offers online support groups and pen-pal opportunities to people with type one diabetes around the globe towards the first online social peer support group for children living with diabetes in Nigeria.


The partnership ushers in the first online social support group for children living with diabetes in Nigeria with the aim of creating a platform for the empowerment of the children and support for their diabetes management and care through help with insulin access, mentoring and penpal.


The pioneer meeting that centered on introduction, understanding living with diabetes  in Nigeria and Q & A section, had in attendance Jack Terschluse –  founder of Penpal United, Dr Mrs. Fetuga (Head of department of the pediatric department at the University and Consultant Pediatric Endocrinology), Doctors Adekoya, Obadina and Adebola from the teaching hospital in attendance.


If you know any child living with diabetes and wish to join our subsequent periodic meetings , please feel free to reach on thengdoc(at)gmail(dot)com.


If you’re interested in partnering with us to ensure steady supplies of insulin, consumables and glucometers are available to our CWDs please do reach us.

A huge thanks to the medical team of the Olabisi Onabanjo University Teaching Hospital, Penpals United, T1International, Access Alliance, Marjorie Funds, Cajsa Lindberg and Cherise Shockley for the support towards making this a reality.

2015 Annual World Diabetes Day Essay Competition (Winner)



As I grab my pen
Pictures, graphs and texts run through my mind
The pain of three hundred and forty-seven million children, women and men
Is extremely difficult to comprehend
Type one, type two and gestational
Others are unclassified
The wrath of diabetes mellitus is intentional
A chronic illness characterized
When the body screams for insulin
And the pancreas cannot produce
At all or enough insulin
So much pain is induced
Oh! What a malady
This disaster has come to ruin!
Playing the lives of humans like a symphony
Oh! Diabetes is so brute
Men and women un-exempted
Young and old
All included
Cruel, sharp and bold
It fights the brain, the heart
The eyes, kidneys and nerves are not spared
Sleeping and waking with fearful tears
Come to my rescue!
I can hear the voices
Of those with this issue
Let us wake from our trances
To help change the present
Eat regular meals based on starchy foods
Go for the ones with high fiber content
Let olive oil be the oil to cook
Let your choice be low fat yoghurt
May you opt for skimmed milk too
Fruits and vegetables, five daily portions
Cut down on your sugar, salt and alcohol
Check your fasting blood sugar as often as possible
Non-adherence to these should be annulled
Oral drugs, injectable and inhaled insulin is available
Let us take our clubs and daggers
To kill this beast called diabetes
Not another life will it endanger
We shall prevent, treat and manage it
Thirty minutes of moderate exercises daily
Healthy diet and adequate sleep
All of these will reduce the incidence drastically
And right now
At this juncture
You and I will get involved
In changing the present for a brighter future

Ajibade-Azeez Adenike
2015 Winning Essay

2015 Annual World Diabetes Day Essay Competition (2nd Place)


Diabetes Mellitus : Changing the present for a bright future

At first Ikenna thought he had begun to see double.
He was sitting in his shop thumbing through a wad of money and it seemed like he could not make out the Naira sign.

He had been feeling like this recently, and he had chosen to ignore it. The last time, he was at Mama Queen’s bar with his friends and he was joking about how ‘African man no dey sick’ when one of them asked him why he was squinting his eyes.

A week later he would be unable to come to the shop and would be sitting with his wife at a clinic, listening to the doctor tell him that he has diabetes and that his eyesight was failing because of it.

Today Ikenna is blind in one eye and almost blind in the second. With the help of his wife he gets injected with insulin every day, among his other medicines.

Ikenna is just one of many people in Nigeria, and the world at large who have been living with diabetes mellitus but do not know till they develop serious complications.

There are three different kinds of diabetes but Type 2 Diabetes which affects people ranging from 20 to 79 years, occurs in 90% of people in the world.

It presents with no symptoms in the early stages and is usually only detected when complications have arisen. It occurs because the body is either no longer sensitive to insulin- which is a hormone that helps our body to carry the glucose in our food into the tissues that need it, or because the body is not producing enough insulin.

There are many reasons for this and the most obvious are, being overweight and eating unhealthy.
The International Diabetes Federation estimates that in 2013, 381.8 million people in the world had Diabetes with 19.8 million of those people living in Africa.

It is expected that these numbers will increase to 591.9 million people and 41.4 million people respectively, by 2035. The WHO projects that by 2030, diabetes will be the 7th leading cause of death in the world.

But there is no need for worry. Diabetes can be prevented and with concerted effort we can reduce these projected numbers. Prevention, it is said, is better than cure.

With respect to diabetes prevention, a balanced, healthy diet is important; a diet rich in fruits, vegetables and lots of water reduces the risk of diabetes.

Exercise too is a key prevention strategy; 30 minutes a day of walking, every day of the week yields good results. Cutting out on alcohol, smoking and going for regular medical check-ups is a necessity.

Early diagnosis is key in delaying the progression to even more advanced disease.

If Ikenna had known he had diabetes early enough, if he had been well informed about the disease, he probably would not be sitting at home now waiting for his food and medicines, while he ponders over what it would feel like to have perfect vision again.

Ayo Matuluko
(1st Runner-up)

2015 Annual World Diabetes Day Essay Competition (3rd Place)


Diabetes Mellitus: Changing the present for a bright future

Nothing conceals the true meaning of a sweet life like this scourge that creeps along while we inattentively indulge in what we have grown up to believe as life’s true sweetness.

Like trading one’s birth right for porridge, Diabetes Mellitus gives us an inch to take a yard. This, we would not allow.

It starts form our awareness of what Diabetes Mellitus is. It is a disease that results from impaired utilization of glucose and its excess in the blood.

This happens when our pancreas cannot produce enough insulin to regulate blood glucose or our tissues are resistant to the hormone. These can cause dehydration, weight loss, poor wound healing, lowered immunity and complications to the eyes, kidneys, heart and many more.

This disease is one of those that need our permission to take its course- depending greatly on our lifestyle- what we do today. We must work on eating healthy- taking less sugary beverages and processed (fast) foods but adopt whole grains like wheat, fibres, fruits, vegetables and polyunsaturated fats seen in nuts, vegetables and fish.

This can help to prevent obesity and chronic hyperglycaemia associated with Diabetes.
We have probably heard many times, the need for physical exercise- exercise helps our body’s sensitivity to insulin and put obesity to check. In the same vein, the sedentary living which this modern age is innocently carving out for us must be avoided.

Why don’t you wake up early so you can take a walk to school or work? Or consider tending that land lying fallow as a mini garden? It’s not stress, but a blessing to the body.

Some of our social habits like smoking and taking alcohol do not help our body in the long run.
Early diagnosis helps good management; you can get a glucometer to check your blood glucose level at intervals.
A fasting blood glucose level of 126mg/dl means that your glucose tolerance is impaired and should see a doctor.

A diagnosis of Diabetes Mellitus is not the end of a good life. Prompt compliance to medication, good lifestyle changes, proper foot care and good hygiene would yield a healthier living.

If Diabetes Mellitus coexist with hypertension and HIV/AIDS, then these conditions should be well managed.
Why should we allow ourselves to be deceived by the Trojan horse of poor eating habits, sedentary lives, lack of exercise, alcoholism, smoking, and lack of medical check-ups, and so miss the true meaning of a sweet life?

Where our eyes can brighten our hearts with the cheery faces of our loved ones, our kidneys can live to sieve out the filth life throws at us, our cells, well and alive to drive our passion and our feet are healthy enough to propel us into our dreams.

When we all consciously adopt these changes, the growing number from over 382 million affected worldwide would begin to see a steady decline and the vibrant population would focus on shaping a happy world.

Ayeni Ayodeji
(Second runner-up)


We are excited to declare the winners of our 2015 World Diabetes Day Essay Competition










The World Diabetes Day is an annual event where diabetes awareness is created by everyone.


This essay competition aims at creating awareness about diabetes and giving enlightenment and knowledge on the need to be proactive and to get busy now in order to ensure a bright future.

Essay Theme:

Diabetes Mellitus: Changing the present for a bright future.


1. To qualify participants must follow @theNGdoc

2. The essay must not be more than 500 words

3. Entries open on Oct 30,2015 and end on Nov 10,2015

4. All entries must be in MS Word format and sent as an attachment to NGDOC  thengdoc(at)gmail(dot)com

5. After submitting the entry, participants MUST make a tweet at @theNGdoc

[e.g I just submitted my entry for @theNGdoc World Diabetes Day essay competition #WDDEssay]


7. The essay could be in any format i.e can be in form of a story,poem,etc

8. The essays would be assessed for creativity and originality

Star prize and other consolation prizes to be given would be announced as publicity goes on. Thank you

View the 2014, 2013 and best international winning essays.



Wednesday March 2 – Friday 4, 2016
Time: 9.00am daily


We write to formally inform and also invite you to participate in the forthcoming STRATEGIES FOR IMPROVING DIABETES CARE IN NIGERIA (SIDCAIN) 2016 annual scientific conference and distinguished personality lecture holding in Osogbo , Osun State, Nigeria from March 2-4, 2016.

The strategies for improving diabetes care in Nigeria initiative was construed about 9 years ago with the major objective of curbing the rising diabetes pandemic in the country through translational research.

The core team comprises researchers in the field of diabetes and hypertension spread across the major tertiary health facilities in the South Western States of Nigeria.

The SIDCAIN research group has successfully completed World Diabetes Foundation assisted projects in Ogun and Oyo States, while that of Osun State is ongoing.

In Ogun and Oyo States, a total of 56 non-communicable disease clinics have been established and 1180 health workers have already been trained to man these clinics where projects have been completed.

Over the years, our activities have expanded to include public awareness programmes, establishment of school health clubs and the Journalists Action Against Diabetes Programme amongst others.

We also hold the annual non-communicable disease conference and distinguished personalities lectures. Previous events have held in Ibadan, Osogbo and Sagamu whilst personalities such as Are Afe Babalola, Prof. John Idoko (NACA), Chief Olusegun Obasanjo and Mr Dele Momodu have given the lectures.

The 2016 event will hold at the Main Auditorium of the Osun State University. The event, as with previous ones will attract participants from all over the country as well as overseas.

Wed March 2: Pre-Conference Update (9-4.30pm)
Welcome cocktail (6-7.30pm)

Thurs March 3: Grant Application Training Course
Opening Ceremony / Distinguished Guest Lecture
First Scientific Session (3-5pm)
Conference Dinner (7pm)

Friday March 4: Second Scientific Session (9-10am)
Symposium (10-11.30am)
Invited Guest Lecture (12-12.45pm)
Awards & Prizes / Closing (2pm)

Other details:

1. All abstracts must be received by Wednesday February 3, 2016. Submission is strictly by email to OR

2. The conference committee will consider any abstract on non-communicable diseases or cardiovascular disease, aside from diabetes mellitus for presentation or publication.

3. Authors may be required to develop selected abstracts to full manuscripts, to be considered for publication and made available at the conference venue, in the institutional Research Journal of Health Sciences (, at a reduced cost.

4. Registration: Early registration before February 4, 2016 is N15,000. In addition, participants shall be required to register separately for the Grant Application Training Course. Details shall be advertised later.

5. Product exhibition and adverts placement in conference brochure:

Exhibition @N80,000 per day
Full page advert – N80,000 per page
Back page @ N100,000
Inside front page @ N90,000
Inside back page @ N80,000
Center Spread @ N130,000

We look forward to welcoming you to this exciting meeting.

Kind Regards,

Prof. Babatope Kolawole FWACP – 2016 LOC Chair
Dr Familoni O.B. FMCP – 2016 co-Chair
Prof. Alebiosu C.O., FWACP – SIDCAIN Coordinator

19 Nigerian Pilgrims lost their lives to NCDs in Saudi.

According to the Nigerian Tribune,  19 Nigerians on pilgrimage to Saudi Arabia died during the pilgrimage and most of them as a result of chronic illnesses like diabetes, hypertension.

Dr Jibrin Suleman, Head of Data Unit, National Hajj Commission of Nigeria (NAHCON) Medical Centre, Mecca, Saudi Arabia,on Tuesday, said during a brief with the leader, Senate Ad Hoc Committee on Hajj, Senator Ali Wakili, who visited the centre in Mecca, Suleman said most of the deceased were aged persons of between 65 years and above.

He said most of the deceased died of heart diseases, hypertension, diabetes and other related ailments.

Suleman said the centre, which was limited to the provision of basic treatment only, recorded two miscarriages and referred 50 cases to Saudi hospitals within the period.

He said more than 10,000 pilgrims had visited the centre for cold, malaria, body pains and other simple and non-complicated cases.

Also briefing the committee, the Head, Medical Team of the centre, Dr Muhammad Bello Abdulkadir, said the clinics were stocked with necessary drugs.

“We brought some of the drugs from Nigeria, while others were procured in Saudi Arabia,” he stressed.

He also said that NAHCON had recruited 232 medical staff, including doctors, nurses, and others to man the clinics.

He, however, complained that the centre had no ambulance to move to the pilgrims’ hostels during emergencies.

Abdulkadir said the four ambulances acquired by NAHCON for the centre were yet to be released by Saudi authorities and urged the National Assembly to intervene.

Earlier speaking, Wakili said members of the ad hoc committee were going round NAHCON facilities in Saudi Arabia to record some of their problems and present them to the Senate.

He commended members of the medical team for their dedication and hard work and urged them to use the limited facilities for the benefit of the pilgrims

The Nigeria Diabetes Online Community commiserates with the families of the deceased and implores the government to create platforms where people living with diabetes and other related chronic conditions will have adequate education on self management and care, access to their supplies and prompt care while performing their religious obligations.



Nasiru Olafimihan
Nasiru Olafimihan

Nasiru’s experience is a certain secret affair that is not known to most people that he has come across at work, school and the neighborhood etc . However, this year, the international diabetes awareness period coincided with his nine years of secret affair with diabetes mellitus and this prompted him to write us this piece on his personal experience.

His early life could be described as very relatively healthy one with little visitations to the hospital, all childhood ailments were treated with over the counter drugs and “epa-ijebu” (a herbal antibiotic) as he called it.


Traditional Medicine for sale
Traditional Medicine for sale

He wrote his final university examination in August 2004 with a heart full of joy and hope of what future holds. He left campus for the National Youth Service Corp (a compulsory 1 year national program for fresh graduates to facilitate cross-cultural mixture). It was early in the month of September 2004 that he started observing some strange changes in his body system.

He observed his excessive crave for water to the extent of drinking water meant for ablution in the mosque whenever he went for prayers, and he would always have water beside him at night. His second observation was frequent urination during the day and night. He initially did not give any serious consideration to these observations simply because he always regarded himself a lover of water.

His third observation was actually made by people around, asking if there was anything wrong with his health because he was losing weight and he always responded to being alright. The curiosity of people about his health prompted him to make consultation.

His first place of consultation was a certain patent medicine store, where he was diagnosed wrongly of having worms (due to his loss of weight). After failed attempt, he visited a “doctor” in his neighborhood that he later discovered to be a quack. After series of injection shots by the “doctor” and with no knowledge of diagnosis by Nasiru, he told the “doctor” he was getting better and the “doctor” then stopped the injection and switched to oral drugs. Consequently his condition became worse again.

This time Nasiru had to visit Apapa Health Centre on the 25th October 2004  where he met a doctor who asked him to go for a test, precisely blood sugar test and urinalysis, in the laboratory. Subsequently, he was diagnosed of Diabetes Mellitus and frightened Nasiru was counselled on the care and management of Diabetes.



For Nasiru the experience of living with diabetes, especially insulin dependent diabetes, is sometimes psychologically awful. The first challenge arises when in the company of others and you’re required to reject some kinds of food without letting them know the reason. Regular injection is another challenge faced by Nasiru.

Some experiences of Hypo by Nasiru have resulted in him passing out in his room and sometimes at public places. He had to be re-deployed from the northern part of Nigeria to the south west on his request due to diabetes and the need for adequate care close to his family.
His non disclosure according to Nasiru are due to some reasons. There are some forms of myths or advice gotten from ignorant people about diabetes. For instance, he had been told once that diabetes is sometime spiritually casted on people. Also, a colleague advised him to come to church where he will be totally healed.
Another person also encouraged him to stop insulin as she had somebody that would give him an herbal medicine that will cure it, though she never brought anything.

When Nasiru volunteered to share his experience with us we were thrilled as it is a common phenomenon for people living with diabetes especially in Africa not to want to share their experience for fear of social stigmatization.



According to Nasiru this medium is also necessary to intimate government on the need to provide assistance to diabetic people, especially the young ones that are insulin dependent, by ensuring easy accessibility of medications.
“I am always sad whenever I meet diabetic people from other countries, for instance Europe, describing how insulin is made easily available to them free of charge by their governments” – Nasiru

We at The Nigeria Diabetes Online Community are committed towards advocating for the about 5 million already diagnosed of Diabetes Mellitus in Nigeria and also through adequate education prevent the surge of Diabetes in Nigeria.

Please do feel free to mail your experiences to us (  in order to share and build a great and empowered community of people living with diabetes.

Lastly, we want to implore the federal government to kindly live up to the free insulin declaration.
Nasiru can be reached via his email: