What is it?
Diabetes is a disorder that affects many people in our society. Diabetes mellitus is a condition in which the body is unable to transport sugar from the blood to the cells. People who suffer from this disease cannot produce or use insulin, which is necessary to keep the sugar under control. Many sufferers of this disease will complain of constantly being thirsty, hungry, and frequently having to urinate. Diabetic patients often have problems with their circulation, which can result in foot pain, and problems. If this disease is not identified and goes untreated, it may be fatal.
What causes it?
Diabetes mellitus can be caused by a number of factors. If there is a family history of diabetes, one's chances of developing this disorder significantly increases. Over weight people are also at risk, since the body is in a constant battle with the elevated sugar. As one gets older, a certain type of diabetes-type II (non-insulin dependent) becomes prevalent. On the other hand, type I diabetes (insulin dependent), is more prevalent in the young. African Americans and Hispanics are also more susceptible to this disease. If any of the above facts apply to you, an evaluation visit to your family doctor is suggested.
How is it treated?
The effective treatment of diabetes mellitus begins with patient cooperation and compliance. The patient needs to understand that this disease can be fatal and that a strict diet as well as faithful use of all medication is necessary to keep this disease under control. Some patients may need to inject insulin while others might need to take various oral medications. Careful monitoring of one's blood sugar on a daily basis is essential since it will give both the patient and doctor an idea of how well the sugar is controlled. Periodic trips to your foot doctor are also needed. Many diabetics have problems with their feet and if regular monitoring is not followed, subsequent complications can readily occur. Active ongoing patient participation is an essential aspect in the clinical management of this disease.