Perhaps you saw the 3/10/2016 segment on the CBS Evening News that reported a startling number of Americans (as many as one in three, according to the Centers for Disease Control) are at risk for developing type 2 diabetes (T2D). The piece highlighted a study from UCLA indicating that almost half of Californians have pre-diabetes, the precursor state for T2D, or T2D.
The story (which reached nearly 6 million viewers) also featured Berrie Center patient, Paul Healy, who lost 32 pounds after his T2D diagnosis—and interviewed the Berrie Center’s new adult endocrinologist, Jacqueline Lonier, MD, who talked about preventing the progression of pre-diabetes to full-blown T2D.
Currently, a whopping 70 per cent of people diagnosed with T2D make that progression—but it doesn’t have to be that high, according to Dr. Lonier. “The most effective way to stop the progression is through diet and exercise, regular activity and watching carbohydrate intake,” said Dr. Lonier, who joined the adult endocrinology team at the Berrie Center in July of 2015. These small steps can reduce the progression from pre-diabetes to T2D by more than half.
Dr. Lonier received her MD from Columbia University College of Physicians & Surgeons and she is very happy to return to the Columbia University Medical Center to join the faculty of Medicine in Endocrinology and the Berrie Center. Dr. Lonier did fellowship training in endocrinology as well as an internal medicine residency at New York University (NYU). She also spent one year as a hospitalist at NYU. Dr. Lonier received her BS in biology from Yale.
“What I like about the Berrie Center is how patient focused it is,” said Dr. Lonier after her first 6 months at the Berrie Center. “I am able to spend a lot of time with my patients, much more than I would have had in another practice. That is something I really value and that patients really appreciate. It’s overall a very satisfying experience to be both a patient and a clinician here.”
Dr. Lonier cares for people with many forms of diabetes at the Berrie Center in the outpatient and inpatient settings, including those with difficult to manage type 2 diabetes as well as people with type 1 diabetes that was initially misdiagnosed.
Said Dr. Lonier: “The word that people use to describe endocrinology is cerebral—it’s a cerebral specialty, so you spend a lot more time thinking and problem solving. I enjoy problem solving, especially complex problems. It’s not solving procedural or anatomical issues, it’s about pathways and biology. There’s also a lot of behavioral and psychological issues that come with diabetes, which adds yet another dimension to an incredibly interesting field. We really get to know and treat the whole person.”
Jacqueline Lonier grew up in Bergen County, NJ thinking she wanted to be a research scientist. “I spent time doing basic science research in residency and fellowship, but ultimately I knew that clinical practice was the right direction for me,” said Dr. Lonier, 32. “I love taking care of patients and hope to get involved in our clinical research program."