Diabetes is a lifelong condition that causes a person’s blood sugar level to become too high. It can strike anyone, from any sphere of life. The number of diabetic person increasing day by day. According to WHO, about 422 million people worldwide have diabetes. It is a condition where people don’t produce enough insulin to meet their body’s needs or their cells don’t respond properly to insulin.
Interesting facts related to diabetes :
1. The earliest known written record that likely referred to diabetes was in 1500 B.C in the Egyptians Ehers Papyrus. It referred to the symptoms of frequent urination.
2. Diabetes symptoms such as thirst, weight loss, and excess urination were recognized for more than 1200 years before the disease was named.
3. The Greek physician Aretaeus of Cappodocia was credited with coining the term ”diabetes” (meaning “flowing through” in Greek).
4. The role of pancreas in diabetes was discovered by Joseph Von Mering and Oscar Minkowski in Austria in 1889.
5. The first portable blood glucose meter was created by Ames Diagnostics in 1969- 1970. It was called the Ames Reflectance Meter (ARM).
6. Dr. Elliott P. Joslin, founder of the Joslin Diabetes Center, was the first doctor to specialize in Diabetes and to encourage self management.
Causes of Diabetes :
There are different types of diabetes such as Type l diabetes, Type 2 diabetes and Gestational diabetes which has different causes.
Causes of Type 1 Diabetes :
Type 1 is an autoimmune condition. The exact cause of the Type 1 Diabetes isn’t known, researchers believe that the disease develops when a virus or environmental toxin damages the pancreas or cause the body immune system to attack the B-cells of pancreas thus it can no longer produce enough insulin. Without insulin, glucose in the blood can’t enter the cells in the body and blood glucose level rises.
2. Causes of type 2 diabetes:
In type 2 diabetes our body become resistance to insulin. Our body is no longer using the hormones efficiently. This force our pancreas to make more insulin. Overtime, this can damage cell in our pancreas and therefore they may not be able to produce insulin. If insulin is not produced enough or our body doesn’t use it efficiently glucose builds up in bloodstream.
3. Causes of Gestational diabetes:
The exact cause of gestational diabetes is unknown, when you are pregnant your body produces larger amounts of hormones like human placental lactogen and hormones that increases insulin resistance. These hormones affect the placenta and sustain the pregnancy. Overtime, the amount of these hormones in your body increases. Thus they may start to make your body insulin resistance, if the insulin resistance becomes too strong, blood glucose level may rise abnormally this can cause gestational diabetes.
Symptoms of diabetes :
1. Blurred vision
2. Frequent urination
3. Increase hunger and thirst
5. Unexplained weight loss
6. Numbness or tingling in the hands or feets
Complications due to diabetes :
(i) Heart diseases- Diabetes can damage the blood vessels and lead to heart attack. According to the international diabetes Foundation, heart disease is the leading cause of death in the people with diabetes.
(ii) Kidney disease- Diabetes can also damage blood vessels in the Kidney. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention(CDC) 33% of people with diabetes have chronic kidney disease.
(iii) Neuropathy – Diabetes can cause neuropathy, another name for nerve damage, especially in the feet and hands. This can cause weakness numbness and pain in hands and feets.
(iv) Retinopathy- If blood sugar levels are high, they can damage the eyes and cause vision loss and blindness. Retinopathy causes the development and leaking of new blood vessels behind the eyes.
Diagnosis and treatment of diabetes :
The following test are used for the diagnosis of diabetes:
(i) Fasting Plasma Glucose Test measure your blood glucose after you have gone at least 8 hours without eating. In the fasting Glucose level is 126 mg per dL or above, it means you have diabetes.
(ii) Oral Glucose Tolerance Test measures your blood sugar after you have gone at least 8 hours without eating and 2 hours after you drink a glucose containing beverage. If the level is 200 mg per dL or above, then you have diabetes.
(iii) Random Plasma Glucose Test- In this doctor checks your blood sugar level without regard to when you ate your last meal. If the level is 200 mg per dL or more, it means that you are suffering from a disease known as diabetes.