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Why It Is Important That Diabetes Is Monitored And Managed Correctly?

Diabetes

Diabetes

We have advice for both types of diabetes. Monitor blood sugar every day — by keeping your blood glucose levels within target range, you can reduce the risk of developing complications by at least 50%. Self-care is important—the decisions and choices you make every day are the biggest part of diabetes management. Regular exercise and healthy meal planning can reduce the need for blood glucose - lowering medications. Click here to get free downloadable diabetes education materials that provide helpful information about managing your diabetes, and helpful print-outs to keep track of your important health information and emergency contacts. We have answers to your diabetes questions. What is diabetes? Diabetes occurs when your body is unable to use food as an energy source. This occurs when the pancreas fails to produce insulin, or the body does not properly use the insulin produced. Diabetes is a lifelong disease that affects nearly 23.6 million Americans, one quarter of whom are unaware that they have it. What’s the difference between Type I and Type II diabetes? People with Type 1 diabetes produce little or no insulin. Type 1 diabetes is generally diagnosed before the age of 30. People with type 1 diabetes require insulin injections to live. Type 2 diabetes is more common, affecting 90-95% of those diagnosed with diabetes. People with type 2 diabetes may produce insulin, but it isn’t enough, or the body can’t use it effectively to lower blood glucose levels. Type 2 diabetes is generally diagnosed after age 40, although there has been a recent increase in diagnosis of people in their 30s. What should I be eating to stay healthy? Proper, practical meal planning offers true health benefits because it helps ensure that you are eating nutritious foods, it helps you Continue reading >>

Patient Education: Preventing Complications In Diabetes Mellitus (beyond The Basics)

Patient Education: Preventing Complications In Diabetes Mellitus (beyond The Basics)

DIABETES OVERVIEW Diabetes mellitus is a chronic condition that can lead to complications over time. These complications can include: Coronary heart disease, which can lead to a heart attack Cerebrovascular disease, which can lead to stroke Retinopathy (disease of the eye), which can lead to blindness Nephropathy (disease of the kidney), which can lead to kidney failure and the need for dialysis Neuropathy (disease of the nerves), which can lead to, among other things, ulceration of the foot requiring amputation (see "Patient education: Diabetic neuropathy (Beyond the Basics)") Many of these complications produce no symptoms in the early stages, and most can be prevented or minimized with a combination of regular medical care and blood sugar monitoring. CARDIOVASCULAR COMPLICATIONS IN DIABETES A number of measures are important to reduce the risk of cardiovascular (heart and blood vessel) disease. Quit smoking. Manage high blood pressure with lifestyle modifications and/or medication(s). Have a blood test to measure cholesterol and triglyceride levels, and modify the diet if needed. Some people will also need a medication to lower their low-density lipoprotein (LDL) ("bad cholesterol") or triglycerides. If medication is needed, a statin drug should be included whenever possible. The statin drugs have been shown to decrease the future risk of heart attacks, strokes, and death in people with diabetes who are over age 40 years, even when cholesterol levels are normal. The initiation of statins should be based upon cardiovascular risk rather than an LDL cholesterol level. Statins are recommended for anyone with clinical cardiovascular disease or over age 40 years, regardless of baseline lipid levels. For patients without clinical cardiovascular disease and under age 40 year Continue reading >>

Diabetes And High Blood Pressure

Diabetes And High Blood Pressure

Diabetes is a condition in which the amount of glucose (sugar) in your blood is too high because your body cannot use it properly. This happens because your body either cannot use or make a hormone called insulin, which is responsible for turning sugar into food for your body's cells. There are two main types of diabetes: Type 1, where your body is unable to produce any insulin Type 2, where your body either does not produce enough insulin, or cannot use it. Symptoms of diabetes The main symptoms of diabetes are: Increased thirst Frequently needing to go to the toilet, especially at night Extreme tiredness Weight loss Blurred vision Genital itching Thrush If diabetes is not controlled, it can cause serious damage to your kidneys, eyes, nervous system, heart and blood vessels. Treatment for diabetes aims to avoid this by keeping blood sugar levels as near to normal as possible. Type 1 diabetes is usually treated by insulin injections, as well as healthy eating and being active. Type 2 diabetes is usually treated by healthy eating and being active alone, but sometimes tablets or insulin injections are also needed. Diabetes and high blood pressure About 25% of people with Type 1 diabetes and 80% of people with Type 2 diabetes have high blood pressure. Having diabetes raises your risk of heart disease, stroke, kidney disease and other health problems. Having high blood pressure also raises this risk. If you have diabetes and high blood pressure together, this raises your risk of health problems even more. If you have diabetes, your doctor will want to be sure that your blood pressure is very well controlled. This means that they will probably want your blood pressure to be below 130 over 80. People with diabetes and high blood pressure are sometimes given the blood pressure Continue reading >>

Guidelines For Perioperative Management Of The Diabetic Patient

Guidelines For Perioperative Management Of The Diabetic Patient

Surgery Research and Practice Volume 2015 (2015), Article ID 284063, 8 pages 1Texas A&M Health Science Center, 8447 State Highway 47, Bryan, TX 77807, USA 2Division of Pulmonary, Critical Care & Sleep Medicine, Texas A&M Health Science Center, Corpus Christi, 1177 West Wheeler Avenue, Suite 1, Aransas Pass, TX 78336, USA Academic Editor: Roland S. Croner Copyright © 2015 Sivakumar Sudhakaran and Salim R. Surani. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. Abstract Management of glycemic levels in the perioperative setting is critical, especially in diabetic patients. The effects of surgical stress and anesthesia have unique effects on blood glucose levels, which should be taken into consideration to maintain optimum glycemic control. Each stage of surgery presents unique challenges in keeping glucose levels within target range. Additionally, there are special operative conditions that require distinctive glucose management protocols. Interestingly, the literature still does not report a consensus perioperative glucose management strategy for diabetic patients. We hope to outline the most important factors required in formulating a perioperative diabetic regimen, while still allowing for specific adjustments using prudent clinical judgment. Overall, through careful glycemic management in perioperative patients, we may reduce morbidity and mortality and improve surgical outcomes. 1. Introduction Diabetes has classically been defined as a group of metabolic diseases characterized by hyperglycemia due to defects in insulin secretion, insulin action, or a combination of both [1]. The vast majority of di Continue reading >>

General Diabetes Facts And Information

General Diabetes Facts And Information

What is diabetes? Diabetes is a disease in which the body is unable to properly use and store glucose (a form of sugar). Glucose backs up in the bloodstream — causing one’s blood glucose (sometimes referred to as blood sugar) to rise too high. There are two major types of diabetes. In type 1 (fomerly called juvenile-onset or insulin-dependent) diabetes, the body completely stops producing any insulin, a hormone that enables the body to use glucose found in foods for energy. People with type 1 diabetes must take daily insulin injections to survive. This form of diabetes usually develops in children or young adults, but can occur at any age. Type 2 (formerly called adult-onset or non insulin-dependent) diabetes results when the body doesn’t produce enough insulin and/or is unable to use insulin properly (insulin resistance). This form of diabetes usually occurs in people who are over 40, overweight, and have a family history of diabetes, although today it is increasingly occurring in younger people, particularly adolescents. How do people know if they have diabetes? People with diabetes frequently experience certain symptoms. These include: being very thirsty frequent urination weight loss increased hunger blurry vision irritability tingling or numbness in the hands or feet frequent skin, bladder or gum infections wounds that don't heal extreme unexplained fatigue In some cases, there are no symptoms — this happens at times with type 2 diabetes. In this case, people can live for months, even years without knowing they have the disease. This form of diabetes comes on so gradually that symptoms may not even be recognized. Who gets diabetes? Diabetes can occur in anyone. However, people who have close relatives with the disease are somewhat more likely to develop it. Continue reading >>

Your Guide To Diabetes

Your Guide To Diabetes

Table of Contents To promote and protect the health of Canadians through leadership, partnership, innovation and action in public health. —Public Health Agency of Canada Your Guide to Diabetes Diabetes affects roughly two and a half million Canadians. Left untreated, diabetes can lead to many serious complications, including: heart disease, kidney disease, vision loss, and lower limb amputation. The Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) estimates that 5 million Canadians over the age of 20 are currently pre-diabetic. An additional 1 million new cases of pre-diabetes are expected by 2016. Pre-diabetes is a key risk factor for type 2 diabetes, and if left untreated more than half of the people with pre-diabetes will develop type 2 diabetes within 8 to 10 years. Although diabetes can lead to serious complications and premature death, there are steps that can be taken to prevent or control the disease and lower the risk of complications. This guide is intended to help you understand diabetes, how certain types can be prevented or managed, and how to live with the condition. Did You Know? You may be pre-diabetic and not know it. Pre-diabetes occurs when blood sugar levels are high, but not high enough to diagnose diabetes. Talk to your health care provider to learn more. What is diabetes? Diabetes is a chronic disease that results from the body's inability to sufficiently produce and/or properly use insulin, a hormone that regulates the way glucose (sugar) is stored and used in the body. The body needs insulin to use sugar as an energy source. There are several forms of diabetes: type 1, type 2 and gestational diabetes. What is pre-diabetes? Pre-diabetes occurs when blood glucose (sugar) levels are higher than normal, but not high enough for a diagnosis of diabetes. Glucos Continue reading >>

Feline Diabetes

Feline Diabetes

Insulin injections are the preferred method of managing diabetes in cats. Figure 1: To administer an injection, pull the loose skin between the shoulder blades with one hand. With the other hand, insert the needle directly into the indentation made by holding up the skin, draw back on the plunger slightly, and if no blood appears in the syringe, inject gently. Tips for Treatment 1. You can do it! Treating your cat may sound difficult, but for most owners it soon becomes routine. 2. Work very closely with your veterinarian to get the best results for your cat. 3. Once your cat has been diagnosed, it's best to start insulin therapy as soon as possible. 4. Home glucose monitoring can be very helpful. 5. Tracking your cat's water intake, activity level, appetite, and weight can be beneficial. 6. A low carbohydrate diet helps diabetic cats maintain proper glucose levels. 7. With careful treatment, your cat's diabetes may well go into remission. 8. If your cat shows signs of hypoglycemia (lethargy, weakness, tremors, seizures, vomiting) apply honey, a glucose solution, or dextrose gel to the gums and immediately contact a veterinarian. Possible Complications Insulin therapy lowers blood glucose, possibly to dangerously low levels. Signs of hypoglycemia include weakness, lethargy, vomiting, lack of coordination, seizures, and coma. Hypoglycemia can be fatal if left untreated, so any diabetic cat that shows any of these signs should be offered its regular food immediately. If the cat does not eat voluntarily, it should be given oral glucose in the form of honey, corn syrup, or proprietary dextrose gels (available at most pharmacies) and brought to a veterinarian immediately. It is important, however, that owners not attempt to force fingers, food, or fluids into the mouth of a Continue reading >>

Diabetes Doctors: Which Specialists Treat Diabetes?

Diabetes Doctors: Which Specialists Treat Diabetes?

Diabetes is a condition that affects a person's blood sugar levels and can require various treatments. Understanding which doctors help treat diabetes can simplify the process, making it less stressful. This article helps people with diabetes to understand the key differences between the various diabetes specialists. It also covers some common guidelines to follow for visiting each of these experts, to ensure you get the most out of your treatment. Which doctors help with treating diabetes? There are a number of diabetes specialists who may be involved in treating someone with this common condition. As each of these specialists has a slightly different role, there are some key things to be aware of before seeing each one. General care physicians A general care physician will often help in the treatment of people with diabetes. Regular check-ups will usually be carried out once every 3 to 4 months. If there is anything outside their area of expertise, a general care physician will frequently send an individual to an endocrinologist first of all. Endocrinologists The most common specialists in the field of diabetes are endocrinologists. Endocrinologists specialize in the glands of the body, and the hormones that are produced from those glands. The pancreas is a gland that comes under the spotlight when managing diabetes. It produces insulin that helps regulate blood sugar. In the case of people with diabetes, insulin is either not produced or does not work properly. People with type 1 diabetes are put under the care of an endocrinologist most of the time. People with type 2 diabetes, who have fluctuating blood sugar levels, will also need to see an endocrinologist. Visiting a doctor for diabetes When visiting a doctor about diabetes for the first time, it is important tha Continue reading >>

Gestational Diabetes During Pregnancy

Gestational Diabetes During Pregnancy

Has your doctor diagnosed you with gestational diabetes (GD or GDM), a form of diabetes that appears only during pregnancy? While it might feel overwhelming at first, it turns out that this pregnancy complication is much more common than you might think. In fact, up to 9.2 percent of pregnant women have GD, according to a 2014 analysis by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Know that with careful monitoring and treatment, it can be managed, and you can have a safe and healthy pregnancy. READ MORE: What causes gestational diabetes? Who's most at risk? What are the symptoms? How is it diagnosed? What are the complications? How can you prevent gestational diabetes? How is it treated? What happens to mom and baby after birth? What causes gestational diabetes? Gestational diabetes usually starts between week 24 and week 28 of pregnancy when hormones from the placenta block insulin — a hormone produced in the pancreas that regulates the body's metabolism of fats and carbs and helps the body turn sugar into energy — from doing its job and prevent the body from regulating the increased blood sugar of pregnancy effectively. This causes hyperglycemia (or high levels of sugar in the blood), which can damage the nerves, blood vessels and organs in your body. Who’s most at risk for gestational diabetes? While researchers aren't certain why some women get gestational diabetes while others don’t, they do know that you may be at an increased risk if: You are overweight. Having a BMI of 30 or more going into pregnancy is one of the most common risk factors for gestational diabetes because the extra weight affects insulin's ability to properly keep blood sugar levels in check. You have a higher level of abdominal fat. Recent research published in the American Di Continue reading >>

Diabetes: Choosing And Using Your Glucose Meter

Diabetes: Choosing And Using Your Glucose Meter

The process of monitoring one's own blood glucose with a glucose meter is often referred to as self-monitoring of blood glucose or "SMBG." To test for glucose with a typical glucose meter, place a small sample of blood on a disposable "test strip" and place the strip in the meter. The test strips are coated with chemicals (glucose oxidase, dehydrogenase, or hexokinase) that combine with glucose in blood. The meter measures how much glucose is present. Meters do this in different ways. Some measure the amount of electricity that can pass through the sample. Others measure how much light reflects from it. The meter displays the glucose level as a number. Several new models can record and store a number of test results. Some models can connect to personal computers to store test results or print them out. Choosing a Glucose Meter At least 25 different meters are commercially available. They differ in several ways including: Amount of blood needed for each test Testing speed Overall size Ability to store test results in memory Cost of the meter Cost of the test strips used Newer meters often have features that make them easier to use than older models. Some meters allow you to get blood from places other than your fingertip (alternative site testing). Some new models have automatic timing, error codes and signals, or barcode readers to help with calibration. Some meters have a large display screen or spoken instructions for people with visual impairments. Using Your Glucose Meter Diabetes care should be designed for each individual patient. Some patients may need to test (monitor) more often than others do. How often you use your glucose meter should be based on the recommendation of your health care provider. Self-monitoring of blood glucose (SMBG) is recommended for all p Continue reading >>

The Two Skill Sets Of Self-monitoring Of Blood Glucose Education: The Operational And The Interpretive

The Two Skill Sets Of Self-monitoring Of Blood Glucose Education: The Operational And The Interpretive

The goal of SMBG education is to ensure that people who use a blood glucose meter are competent and confident in their ability to perform blood glucose tests and interpret the resulting data to make lifestyle choices, which have an impact on clinical outcomes. Competence and confidence are necessary for people to use SMBG effectively as a tool in their diabetes self-management plan. The two skill sets necessary for successful SMBG are 1) operational skills and 2) interpretive skills (Table 3). Because blood glucose meters can be obtained from a variety of sources, diabetes educators may not be directly involved initially in either teaching or assessing both of these skill sets. At the time of diabetes education, regardless of how long ago a person was prescribed a blood glucose meter, it is important for diabetes educators to assess both of these skill sets to uncover potential barriers to using the meter and SMBG data. Operational skills During education sessions in which the operational skills of monitoring are being taught, it is important that educators demonstrate the mechanics of performing a blood glucose test and then ask participants for a return demonstration. In addition to successfully performing blood glucose tests confidently and competently, individuals should learn how to use a lancet device, properly dispose of lancets and strips, use control solution, obtain an adequate blood sample, alternate testing sites, code the meter (if required), clean the meter, and document their SMBG results in a logbook or download blood glucose data from the meter. Educators should heed universal precautions when demonstrating how to operate a meter.7 Other aspects of successfully operating a meter are discussed in detail in the following sections. Selecting a meter. Many Continue reading >>

Blood Glucose Monitoring

Blood Glucose Monitoring

One of the main aims of diabetes treatment is to keep blood glucose levels within a specified target range. The key is balancing your food with your activity, lifestyle and diabetes medicines. Blood glucose monitoring can help you understand the link between blood glucose, food, exercise and insulin. Over time your readings will provide you and your health professionals with the information required to determine the best management strategy for your diabetes. Maintaining good blood glucose control is your best defence to reduce the chances of developing complications from diabetes. Self-blood glucose monitoring allows you to check your blood glucose levels as often as you need to or as recommended by your doctor or Credentialled Diabetes Educator. To test blood glucose levels, you need: A blood glucose meter A lancet device with lancets Test strips. Blood glucose meters are usually sold as kits giving you all the equipment you need to start. There are many different types, offering different features and at different prices to meet individual needs. Most of these are available from Diabetes Australia in your state or territory, pharmacies and some diabetes centres. Your doctor or Credentialled Diabetes Educator can help you choose the meter that’s best for you, and your Credentialled Diabetes Educator or pharmacist can show you how to use your meter to get accurate results. To test your blood glucose levels, you prick your finger with the lancet and add a small drop of blood onto a testing strip. This strip is then inserted into the meter, which reads the strip and displays a number – your blood glucose level. When and how often you should test your blood glucose levels varies depending on each individual, the type of diabetes and the tablets and/or insulin being us Continue reading >>

Diabetic Seizures – What Are They? Symptoms, Causes, And Treatments

Diabetic Seizures – What Are They? Symptoms, Causes, And Treatments

A diabetic seizure is a serious medical condition and without emergency treatment, it has proven to be fatal. Extremely low levels of sugar in the diabetic’s blood cause these seizures. That is why it is so important for those who have diabetes to monitor and control their blood sugar. What Are the Causes? A number of different things can actually cause a diabetic seizure to occur. It could happen because too much insulin is injected, or because the diabetic did not eat right after taking insulin. Some of the other potential causes include not eating meals regularly or drinking too much alcohol. Even certain oral diabetes medications can make the body produce excess insulin. Those who are exercising too much without taking into account how this will affect their insulin levels will also be at a greater risk of suffering a diabetic stroke. No matter what causes the seizure, it is always a medical emergency and those who have one need immediate medical attention. What Are the Symptoms? When entering the first stages of a diabetic seizure, the person may exhibit a number of different symptoms. Some of the most common symptoms include: Sweating Clamminess Drowsiness Confusion Bodily shakes Hallucinations Rapid and unexpected emotional changes Weakness in the muscles Anxiety Vision changes Loss of ability to speak clearly After these initial symptoms, the next phase of symptoms begin and the danger level rises. Now, the person may stare into space and be non-communicative and uncontrollable body movements and contractions of the muscles may occur. In some cases, the diabetic will be unaware of the movements and may even fall into unconsciousness. What Is the Prevention and Treatment? The best way to deal with this problem is by ensuring it does not occur in the first place Continue reading >>

Managing Diabetes With Blood Glucose Control

Managing Diabetes With Blood Glucose Control

There are two common ways that physicians assess how well diabetes is controlled: [1] Frequent measurements of blood glucose, and [2] measurement of glycohemoglobin (A1c). Each method has its good and bad points, but combined they give a fairly accurate picture of the state of glucose control in a diabetic. Most physicians will use both methods. Why Tight Blood Glucose Is Important Measurement of Blood Glucose (Blood Sugar) When we speak about measuring blood glucose levels, it can be done 2 different ways. Blood glucose can be measured randomly from a sample taken at any time (called a "random blood sugar" or RBS). Blood glucose can also be measured in the "fasting" state, meaning that the person has not eaten or taken in any calories in the past 8 hours (usually this is done overnight and it is referred to as an overnight fast and is called a "fasting blood sugar" or FBS). In a person with normal insulin production and activity (a non-diabetic) blood sugar levels will return to "fasting" levels within 3 hours of eating. People with diabetes (type 1 and type 2) may not be able to get their blood glucose down this quickly after a meal or drinking a calorie-containing drink. More about this can be found on our Diagnosing Diabetes page. Learn More about How to Manage Diabetes Remember, the normal fasting blood glucose level is between 70 and 110 mg/dL. Frequent Measurements of Blood Glucose. The goal in this part of diabetes management is to strive to keep fasting blood sugars under 140 mg/dL and preferably closer to the 70 to 120 mg/dL range. Ideally, one could monitor blood sugars 4 times per day (or more) to follow how well the sugars are controlled. This information could be used to adjust your diet and medications to achieve this goal. Usually blood glucose measureme Continue reading >>

Treating Diabetes: 1921 To The Present Day

Treating Diabetes: 1921 To The Present Day

The lives of people with diabetes has changed considerably in 50 years. They now have specific tools and easier access to information than ever before. The healthcare professionals who treat them also know more about the complexity of the disease, and which treatments work best. Pending the next medical revolution, Diabetes Québec is demanding the implementation of a national strategy to fight diabetes – a strategy founded on education, prevention, support and treatment. The last 60 years have clearly demonstrated that people with diabetes who are well informed, properly supported and treated appropriately live longer lives in better health. The discovery of insulin and glycemic control Insulin, discovered in 1921 by the legendary Banting, Best and MacLeod collaboration, is nothing short of a miracle. Worldwide, it has saved thousands of patients from certain death. Before the discovery of insulin, diabetics were doomed. Even on a strict diet, they could last no more than three or four years. However, despite the many types of insulin and the first oral hypoglycemic agents that came to market around 1957 in Canada, glycemia control – the control of blood glucose (sugar) levels – still remains an imprecise science. In the 1950s, the method a person used to control his blood glucose levels was to drop a reagent tablet into a small test tube containing a few drops of urine mixed with water. The resulting colour – from dark blue to orange – indicated the amount of sugar in the urine. Even when they monitored their patients closely, doctors realized that blood glucose levels had to be much better controlled in order to delay the major complications significantly affecting their patients’ lives: blindness, kidney disease, gangrene, heart attack and stroke. A disc Continue reading >>

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