Diabetes Mellitus

About

Diabetes Mellitus

What is diabetes?

Diabetes mellitus, or diabetes, is the most common of all endocrine disorders. Diabetes can develop if you have an insulin deficiency or your body is resistant to insulin, which causes your blood glucose (blood sugar) level to be too high. Insulin is an essential hormone that affects metabolism. There are three main types of this chronic (long-term) condition: type 1, type 2, and gestational diabetes.

What’s the difference between type 1 and type 2 diabetes?

Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition. It develops most frequently in children and adolescents. There may be no symptoms and it can develop quickly. Type 2 diabetes develops more gradually and begins as insulin resistance. It occurs most frequently in adults. Type 2 diabetes is more common, making up 90-95% of all diagnosed cases of diabetes.

What is gestational diabetes?

Gestational diabetes is characterized by high glucose during pregnancy. In most cases, gestational diabetes goes away once the pregnancy ends. However, having gestational diabetes increases the risk of developing type 2 diabetes later in life.

Having diabetes while pregnant can also increase the chance of complications for both the mother and child. Gestational diabetes often presents with no, or only mild, symptoms. It’s very important to get tested in your first or second trimester of pregnancy to make sure your insulin level is well controlled.

Causes

What causes diabetes?

Each type of diabetes has a distinct cause.

Type 1 diabetes is an autoimmune condition that means the body’s immune system attacks and permanently damages the pancreas cells, which are responsible for producing insulin. Type 1 diabetes is believed to be caused by genes and environmental factors such as viral infections.

Type 2 diabetes develops due to your body’s resistance to insulin. Cells in your pancreas produce insulin, but certain tissues around your body can become resistant to it. This increases the need for insulin, so the pancreas produces even more insulin. As we age, the pancreas cannot keep up with this increased production, and insulin production begins to decrease. Type 2 diabetes is usually influenced by lifestyle factors, including obesity, poor nutrition, and a lack of regular physical inactivity. Getting older is also a risk factor. 

Gestational diabetes is also linked to lifestyle factors. Obesity or gaining too much weight during pregnancy can cause it. A family history of type 2 diabetes can also make women more likely to develop gestational diabetes.

With Insurance

Diabetes and Endocrinology

Your copay
Depending on insurance

Without Insurance

Diabetes and Endocrinology

$149

Initial Visit

$75

Follow Up

Symptoms

What are the symptoms of diabetes?

The most common symptoms of diabetes include:

  • Having to urinate frequently
  • Increased thirst
  • Increased appetite
  • Weight loss
  • Blurred vision
  • Feeling tired
  • Dry skin
  • Wounds heal slowly
  • Increased number of infections
  • Tingling or numbing of the hands and feet

Diagnosis

How is diabetes diagnosed?

There are three main diagnostic tests that your doctor may use to determine if you have diabetes. They include:

  • An A1C test measures your average glucose over the past three months. A sample of blood is used to check your glucose level.
  • A fasting plasma glucose test (FPG) is a blood test that measures your fasting plasma glucose. You cannot eat or drink anything except water for 8-12 hours before the test.
  • An oral glucose tolerance test (OGTT) measures your glucose levels before and two hours after drinking a liquid that contains glucose.
  • A random plasma glucose test (RPG) measures your plasma glucose at any point of the day. You don’t have to fast for this test.

Treatment

Can diabetes be cured?

There is currently no cure for diabetes. However, it can be treated and controlled. If type 2 diabetes is managed properly, including some lifestyle adjustments, it’s even possible for it to go into remission.

How is diabetes treated?

The goal of diabetes treatment is to keep your glucose level as close to normal as possible. Diabetes treatment is multifaceted, requiring a team of healthcare professionals, including a primary physician, dietitian, and/or endocrinologist.  The three main components of treatment include:

  • Nutrition therapy: Modifying what you eat and drink will help you achieve and maintain a healthy body weight. Keeping your glucose, blood pressure, and lipid profile (cholesterol) within a healthy range is essential to successful diabetes management. A dietitian can help you determine what nutrition requirements are best for your needs.
  • Exercise: Regular physical activity provides many benefits for people with diabetes. It can help make your body more sensitive to insulin, control your glucose, and lower your risk of heart disease. Because exercise affects how your body reacts to insulin, it’s important to consult with your doctor and/or dietitian about changes in your diet in response to exercise.
  • Medication: Your doctor may prescribe medication and/or an insulin regimen to help control your glucose levels. Type 1 diabetes requires you to have multiple insulin injections or continuous insulin infusion via an insulin pump every day. People with type 2 diabetes often require daily insulin as well as medication.

Uncontrolled diabetes can significantly increase your risk for other serious health conditions. Our medical team at Inland Endocrine will develop a treatment plan to help you manage your diabetes. With good diabetes management, you can maintain a happy, healthy life. Schedule an appointment with Inland Endocrine today.

References

American Diabetes Association. (n.d.). Diabetes Overview. Diabetes Symptoms, Causes, & Treatment. https://www.diabetes.org/diabetes
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2020, June 11). What is diabetes? Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. https://www.cdc.gov/diabetes/basics/diabetes.html
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (2017, May). Gestational Diabetes. National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases. https://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/diabetes/overview/what-is-diabetes/gestational/
 

Information

TM2U Curve inverted

Affordable –
with or without insurance

With Insurance

Diabetes and Endocrinology

Your copay
Depending on insurance

Without Insurance

Diabetes and Endocrinology

$149

Initial Visit

$75

Follow Up