When Should You See A Diabetes Specialist?
Many people who have diabetes also have an experienced primary care (or family practice) doctor or nurse practitioner who can help them manage their diabetes. For example, people with uncomplicated type 2 diabetes may never need to see a specialist because they can easily manage it with their primary care doctor’s help. Other people, however, might choose to see a specialist. Here are 10 reasons why you might want to see an endocrinologist or diabetes care team: 1) Your doctor recommends you have an evaluation with a specialist. After you have been diagnosed with diabetes, your doctor may recommend you see a specialist to confirm the diagnosis and make sure you know your options for managing the disease. 2) Your primary care physician has not treated many diabetes patients. If your doctor has not treated many patients with diabetes or you are unsure about their treatment, you can choose to see a specialist. 3) You are having problems communicating with your doctor. If you feel your doctor is not listening to you or understanding your symptoms, you could see a specialist who will focus primarily on your diabetes. 4) You cannot find the right educational material to help you. Treatment for diabetes starts with learning to manage your diabetes. If you can’t find the right information to help you manage your diabetes, you might want to see a diabetes care team to receive diabetes education. 5) You are having complications or difficulty managing your diabetes. You should definitely see a specialist if you have developed complications. Diabetes typically causes problems with the eyes, kidney, and nerves. In addition, it can cause deformity and open sores on the feet. Diabetes complications only get worse with time, and can cause you to miss out on quality of life. In addi Continue reading >>
Should Everyone With Diabetes See An Endocrinologist?
I was recently diagnosed with type 2 diabetes by my primary-care doctor. Do I need to see a specialist? In general, if you have uncomplicated type 2 diabetes, your primary-care doctor can manage your diabetes care. But I do recommend, especially for new-onset diabetes, that you ask your primary-care doctor to refer you to one particular kind of specialist—a certified diabetes educator (CDE). Among other things, a CDE is specially trained to be able to advise you on lifestyle changes, such as proper nutrition and how much and what kinds of physical activity will help you manage your blood sugar and avoid diabetic complications. Having a CDE assist you with these and other time-consuming elements of treatment relieves some of the burden of care from your doctor, who is not likely to have as much time available during a regular office visit. That’s why a CDE needs to be a key part of your health-care team. Type 1 diabetes is a different story. Anyone who has type 1 diabetes, an autoimmune disorder, should have an endocrinologist on his/her health-care team. An endocrinologist is able to oversee the tightly structured treatment program necessary to manage type 1 diabetes and deal with such things as high-tech insulin pumps, continuous glucose-monitoring devices and so forth. Some people with type 2 diabetes also should see an endocrinologist. See one if… • You’re having trouble controlling your blood sugar. • You and your primary-care doctor are finding it difficult to find the right mix of medications to control your blood sugar without worrisome side effects, including low blood sugar. • You need to take three or more insulin injections per day or use an insulin pump. Even if your type 2 diabetes doesn’t include the above challenges, it makes sense to cons Continue reading >>
Value Of An Endocrinologist
When you are facing a diagnosis of a hormonal condition, like diabetes or thyroid disease, your doctor may suggest you see an endocrinologist. You may be wondering why you need to see a specialist instead of simply sticking with your primary doctor. Here are some reasons why an endocrinologist will provide the level of support and care that you need with this diagnosis. An Endocrinologist is a True Specialist An endocrinologist is a specialist who has thoroughly studied hormonal conditions and knows the best possible treatments, even when conventional treatments do not work well. Unlike a family doctor or general practitioner, an endocrinologist studies hormones and hormonal diseases in depth, and this specialist will be able to provide the best possible treatment. Most general practitioners have the skills necessary to diagnose and treat basic hormonal conditions, but sometimes the help of a specialist is needed. An Endocrinologist Helps Non-Traditional Patients Some patients have diseases that progress as the textbooks say they should. The standard treatments work and they are able to manage their conditions with oral or injected medication with minimal disruption to their day-to-day living. Other patients find that conventional treatment does not work. They stick with the treatments religiously, but they achieve no results. In these cases, an endocrinologist is necessary to ensure all possible treatment avenues are pursued. Some patients need unique care due to other health conditions that affect their hormonal conditions. They may have a genetic condition, like cystic fibrosis, that affects the way their bodies react to treatments. The traditional-path patients may not see the value of an endocrinologist. Those who are in one of the latter categories, however, do. I Continue reading >>
Diabetes & Endocrinology
Diabetes is a disease in which your body is unable to properly use and store glucose (a form of sugar). The specific causes of diabetes depend on the type of diabetes that you're diagnosed with. For more information on diabetes, click on Click here for the diabetes website , the website for the American Diabetes Association. Endocrinology focuses primarily on the endocrine organs, or those organs that may cause a "hormone imbalance". These organs include the pituitary, thyroid, adrenals, ovaries, testes and pancreas. This can be a complicated specialty. There are many glands and hormones in the body, each with their own jobs to do. It is a delicate chemical balance that keeps our bodies running smoothly with very little effort on our part. When the balance is upset, serious diseases and conditions can develop. Endocrinologists can help you manage your diabetes by prescribing insulin and/or medications, offering diet plans and helping you to keep a close watch on your blood glucose levels. Besides diabetes, Endocrinologists also diagnose and treat such issues as: The Benefis Diabetes Education Program offers resources needed to help keep your diabetes under control. In small groups or with individual counseling, you'll learn how to make positive lifestyle changes to live your life well. Recognized by the American Diabetes Association for quality Self-Management Education, this comprehensive program is facilitated by qualified staff dedicated to providing you with the best education and expertise. A series of three educational classes is held on Thursdays from 1-3 p.m. at Benefis Medical Office Building 12, Lower Level Classroom, 2800 11th Avenue South in Great Falls. For more information call (406) 731-8855. Lose weight, feel great and learn to live well for a lifetime! Continue reading >>
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How An Endocrinologist Can Help You Manage Your Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 Diabetes is a growing problem among the American population and worldwide. In fact, it is estimated that roughly 30 million people have Type 2 Diabetes in the United States alone. This is in part due to the prevalence of obesity in children and the increase of people who live sedentary lifestyles and eat a high amount of processed foods. The good news is that in many cases Type 2 Diabetes can be prevented through proper diet and exercise. Type 2 Diabetes occurs when your body does not use insulin properly, which is called insulin resistance. Insulin is a hormone that turns glucose from the food you consume into energy. At first, your pancreas makes extra insulin to make up for this, but, over time your pancreas isn’t able to keep up and is unable to produce enough insulin to keep your blood glucose levels in normal range. As the result, sugar builds up in your blood and in long term will lead to serious complications. Some symptoms of Type 2 diabetes include increased thirst, increased urination, weight loss, fatigue, recurrent infections and frequent yeast infections. Oftentimes Type 2 Diabetes is diagnosed through blood work, but early diabetes can be missed on routine fasting blood work. Some people have a higher risk of developing Type 2 diabetes than others. It is more common among African Americans, Latinos, Native Americans and Asian American/Pacific Islanders as well as the aging population. Other risk factors for Type 2 diabetes include an increased BMI that falls into the obesity range, hypertension, and women with a history of polycystic ovary syndrome, those with a family history of diabetes, having autoimmune condition or take steroid on regular basis. Type 2 Diabetes is treated with lifestyle changes, weight loss, exercise, then oral medications ( Continue reading >>
Endocrinologist – Why See One?
There is more to treating diabetes than keeping your blood sugar levels healthy. Most people with diabetes have a health care team to help them manage. Discover why you may need to see an endocrinologist when you have diabetes. People with diabetes typically work with a health care team including a primary care physician, dentist, ophthalmologist, podiatrist, a diabetes nurse educator, fitness trainer and dietitian. Another person who may be part of your health care team is an endocrinologist. An endocrinologist has extra specialized training to diagnose and treat illnesses that affect your endocrine system, hormones and glands. Insulin is a central hormone the body needs to function and your pancreas is part of the endocrine system. Typically an endocrinologist treats people with diabetes, metabolic disorders, growth disorders, thyroid disease and other related conditions. Often your primary care physician will refer you to an endocrinologist if a specialist is required to help assist with your diabetes self-management program. Most people with type 1 diabetes are advised to see an endocrinologist especially when the condition is new and they are still learning. It may be difficult for the primary care physician to prescribe an insulin regime. People with type 2 diabetes may also be referred when they develop complications or have difficulty managing their condition. An endocrinologist can help you manage your diabetes in the best way possible. In certain situations, a general physician might not be completely comfortable caring for diabetes or could lack the resources to educate a patient. Endocrinologists provide patients with essential information about taking care of diabetes. This helps the patient to be well-trained and motivated to participate fully in their own Continue reading >>
What Is Endocrinology?
Endocrinology is the field of hormone-related diseases. An endocrinologist can diagnose and treat hormone problems and the complications that arise from them. Hormones regulate metabolism, respiration, growth, reproduction, sensory perception, and movement. Hormone imbalances are the underlying reason for a wide range of medical conditions. Endocrinology focuses both on the hormones and the many glands and tissues that produce them. Humans have over 50 different hormones. They can exist in very small amounts and still have a significant impact on bodily function and development. Contents of this article: Here are some key points about endocrinology. More information is in the main article. Endocrinology involves a wide range of systems within the human body. The endocrine tissues include the adrenal gland, hypothalamus, ovaries, and testes. There are three broad groups of endocrine disorders. Polycystic ovary syndrome is the most common endocrine disorder in women. What is the endocrine system? The human endocrine system consists of a number of glands, which release hormones to control many different functions. When the hormones leave the glands, they enter the bloodstream and are transported to organs and tissues in every part of the body. Adrenal glands The adrenal, or suprarenal, glands are located on top of the kidneys. They are divided into two regions. The right gland is triangular, and the left is crescent-shaped. The adrenal glands secrete: corticosteroids, the steroids involved in stress responses, the immune system, inflammation, and more catecholamines, such as norepinephrine and epinephrine, in response to stress aldosterone, which affects kidney function Both men and women have some androgen, but men have higher levels. Androgens control the development of Continue reading >>
Your Visit To The Endocrinologist: What To Expect
After narrowing down your search for an endocrinologist, you have finally selected the one that you think will give you the best care for your diabetes. Diabetes is one of the most common conditions endocrinologists manage. You can work with your doctor to control this disease. You should write down any questions you have as preparation for your appointment. You should go to see an endocrinologist when you’re having problems controlling your diabetes. Your primary care physician may also recommend that you see a specialist for managing diabetes. Signs and symptoms that your diabetes isn’t well-controlled and may benefit from the expertise of an endocrinologist include: tingling in your hands and feet from nerve damage frequent episodes of low or high blood sugar levels weight changes vision problems kidney problems frequent hospital admissions because of diabetes A visit to the endocrinologist usually involves: a complete medical history a head-to-toe exam blood and urine tests an explanation of your management plan This is just a brief overview. Your appointment will start with a measurement of your height, weight, and vital signs, including blood pressure and pulse. They’ll probably check your blood sugar using a finger stick. Your doctor will want to check your teeth to ensure you don’t have mouth infections, and they will check the skin of your hands and feet to ensure that you aren’t developing sores or skin infections. They’ll listen to your heart and lungs with a stethoscope and feel your abdomen with their hands. Be prepared for questions about your current symptoms, family history, and eating habits. Your doctor will want to know how much you exercise you get and what your blood sugars typically run. It’s important to bring a record of your blood Continue reading >>
Working With Your Diabetes Health Care Team
Your healthcare team includes your doctor, dietitian, diabetes educator, exercise trainer, and pharmacist. But remember, you are the most important member of the team. Your health care team is available to help you manage your diabetes and maintain your good health. NOTE: The American Diabetes Association publishes Clinical Practice Recommendations for health care providers. Standards of medical care for people with diabetes were most recently updated in 2012. Those guidelines, published in Diabetes Care, 2012, Volume 35, Supplement 1. How often should I see my doctor? People with diabetes who are treated with insulin shots generally should see their doctor at least every three to four months. People with diabetes who are treated with pills or who are managing diabetes through diet should be seen at least every four to six months. More frequent visits may be necessary if your blood sugar is not controlled or if complications of diabetes are worsening. What information should I give my doctor? Generally, your doctor needs to know how well your diabetes is controlled and whether diabetic complications are starting or getting worse. Therefore, at each visit, provide your doctor with your home blood sugar monitoring record and report any symptoms of hypoglycemia (low blood sugar) or hyperglycemia (high blood sugar). Your doctor also should be informed of any changes in your diet, exercise, or medicines, and of any new illnesses you may have developed. Tell your doctor if you have experienced any symptoms of eye, nerve, kidney, or cardiovascular problems, such as: Blurred vision Numbness or tingling in your feet Persistent hand, feet, face, or leg swelling Cramping or pain in the legs Chest pain Numbness or weakness on one side of your body Unusual weight gain At each visit, Continue reading >>
Things To Look Out For When Searching For An Endocrinologist
In this article we will cover how to find the right Endocrinologist. We all know how important it is to feel comfortable with our physicians. These relationships can determine how often you actually show up for an office visit and whether you trust the medical advice your physician is providing to you. Selecting the right specialist who can help you manage your diabetes may actually change your life! Let’s walk through the steps of helping you find one who is right for you. Who is an Endocrinologist? An endocrinologist is a medical doctor who is a specialist trained in disorders of the endocrine system. While the most common diseases they treat are diabetes and thyroid disorders, endocrinologists may also treat many other illnesses and disorders such as osteoporosis. It is important to find an endocrinologist with a special interest in treating diabetes. All endocrinologists are trained to treat people with diabetes, but some have completed advanced specialty training in diabetes. How does one become an Endocrinologist? An endocrinologist first becomes a medical doctor by attending 4 years of medical school, then completing their 3 years of residency training, followed by 2-3 years of specialty training as an endocrine fellow. They train under an endocrinologist attending physician at a teaching hospital and throughout this 2-3 years, they gain the experience they will need to successfully treat endocrine patients on their own. At this point, they can sit for the exam to become board certified in endocrinology. What’s the difference between an Endocrinologist and a Diabetologist? A diabetologist is a physician who only treats patients with diabetes. Where endocrinologists have specialized training and treat other diseases of the endocrine system, diabetologists usua Continue reading >>
'you Dont Need To See An Endocrinologist!'
Thomas B. Repas, DO, FACP, FACE, CDE, is an endocrinologist, lipidologist and physician nutrition specialist in clinical practice at the Regional Medical Clinic Endocrinology and Diabetes Education Center in Rapid City, SD. Dr. Repas is the former chairman of the professional diabetes advisory committees of the Wyoming and the Wisconsin Diabetes Prevention and Control Programs. He is board certified in the areas of endocrinology, diabetes and metabolism, clinical lipidology, internal medicine and nutrition, and is also a certified diabetes educator. 'You dont need to see an endocrinologist!' A 35-year-old man called and asked if he could see an endocrinologist. He was recently diagnosed with type 2 diabetes by his primary care physician but questioned the diagnosis. The patients mother died from complications of type 1 diabetes. He was concerned that he too might have type 1 diabetes. We replied that we would be happy to see him but requested that he ask his primary care physician to send him to us as a consult. A short time later the patient called us back. His physician told him: You dont need to see an endocrinologist! He was started on metformin and told that he definitely had type 2 diabetes. The physician absolutely refused to request a consult. Therefore, we saw him as a self-referral. The patient was slender and physically active. He did not have clinical evidence of insulin resistance. We agreed with the patient that this did not appear to be type 2 diabetes. C-peptide was detectable but low. Beta-cell antibodies were ordered and we initiated insulin. We subsequently received a phone call from the primary care physician. He was angry that we saw the patient without his permission. He refused to send copies of the patients records. Having worked as a general in Continue reading >>
A Shortage Of Diabetes Doctors
There are too few of the diabetes doctor specialists called endocrinologists Sarah Mart would like to see her endocrinologist every three months. Thats a tough thing to schedulebut not because Mart, the 41-year-old director of research at a nonprofit public health organization in Petaluma, Calif., is too busy. Its difficult to get an appointment with Marts endocrinologist and the other endos in the practice because they have too many patients and not enough open appointment times, says Mart, who has type 1 diabetes. Ive seen other endocrinologists in San Francisco and the Bay Area as well and its been that hard for all of them. According to a study recently published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism (JCEM), there were only 4,841 U.S. endocrinologists in adult practice in 2011. Endocrinologists are doctors who specialize in the endocrine system, the bodys glands and the hormones they produce (the pancreas is both a gland and an organ). Endocrinologists treat diabetes and other health issues, including thyroid diseases, metabolic bone disease such as osteoporosis, and sexual hormone irregularities. While the number of endocrinologists has increased since 1999 (when there were 3,623 adult-practice endocrinologists), there are not enough of them to meet the demand of the estimated 29 million people living with diabetes in this country, says Robert Vigersky, MD, director of the Diabetes Institute at Walter Reed National Military Medical Center and chair of the technical expert panel of the Endocrinology Workforce Study. With diabetes cases rising, the limited number of diabetes doctors, and the Affordable Care Acts improved coverage for people with diabetes, more people than ever want to see an endocrinologistand the endocrinologists who are available Continue reading >>
Why Should I See An Endocrinologist If I Have Diabetes?
If you have diabetes, seeing an endocrinologist is important because they specialize in diabetes and metabolism, and have the latest information on the issues that impact the disease. Watch as endocrinologist Reza Yavari, MD, describes his specialty. An endocrinologist is a physician who specializes in treating diseases of the hormone-producing glands. As insulin is a hormone, diabetes is considered a hormonal disorder. Endocrinologists also treat thyroid disease, pituitary disorders, high or low blood calcium, adrenal problems, and low testosterone or other sex hormone disorders. Some endocrinologists specialize in fertility issues, including the treatment of polycystic ovary syndrome, a common condition in women of childbearing age that often coexists with prediabetes. In many areas of the country there is a shortage of endocrinologists, particularly given the rapid increase in the prevalence of diabetes. Most people with type 2 diabetes will not need to see an endocrinologist, but many people with type 1 diabetes and those with type 2 who have had difficulty managing their blood sugar levels will benefit from seeing someone in this specialty. The Best Life Guide to Managing Diabetes and Pre-Diabetes Bob Greene has helped millions of Americans become fit and healthy with his life-changing Best Life plan. Now, for the first time, Oprah's trusted expert on diet and fitness teams up with a leading... Continue reading >>
Do All People With Diabetes 2 Need To See An Endocrinologist?
Do all people with diabetes 2 need to see an endocrinologist? The short answer to this question is no, but it deserves an explanation. First of all, and unfortunately, there is a severe shortage of endocrinologists in many parts of the country, so even if I thought the right answer was yes, it wouldnt be a practical answer for everyone. But the right answer for this, and for most medical problems, is that you need a good working relationship with a primary physician who is interested in you as a person and your concerns, keeps as up-to-date as can be expected to knowing how much there is to know, communicates well and knows his or her limits. I know of family practitioners, nurse practitioners and general internists who render great diabetes care, and I know some endocrinologists who I dont think do such a good job. Its important to be your own healthcare advocate. Start by being prepared when you go in for your visits. This means having your blood tests done in advance of your visit so that you can discuss the results at the time of the appointment, brining an up-to-date list of all your medications, and bringing well-organized blood sugar readings with you. These steps will go a long way to ensuring that you get good care. If youre not having success despite good care from your primary physician and a good effort on your part, ask to see an endocrinologist your doctor trusts. Continue reading >>
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 >>