Diabetes is a syndrome of disordered metabolism, usually due to a combination of hereditary and environmental causes, resulting in abnormally high blood sugar levels. Dr SK Wangnoo, senior consultant, Apollo Centre for Obesity, Diabetes and Endocrinology (ACODE), tells us more about keeping the disease at bay.
The two most common forms of diabetes are due to either a diminished production of insulin or diminished response by the body to insulin. Both lead to hyperglycemia, which largely causes diabetes.
One has to take lifelong treatment for diabetes. It is treatable but there is no widely available cure. Type 1 diabetes can only be treated with injected insulin, with dietary and lifestyle adjustments. Type 2 is usually managed with a combination of dietary treatment, tablets and insulin supplementation.
If not treated properly, diabetes can affect any part of the human body with disastrous consequences. The eyes, kidneys, nerves, heart, blood vessels and brain are all at risk if diabetes is not controlled properly. Adequate treatment of diabetes, as well as increased emphasis on blood pressure control and lifestyle factors may improve the risk profile.
With increasing prevalence of diabetes especially in Indians, diabetes screening is recommended for many people at various stages of life, and for those with any of several risk factors.
Many healthcare providers recommend universal screening for adults at age 40 or 50, and often periodically thereafter. Earlier screening is typically recommended for those with risk factors such as obesity, family history of diabetes, high-risk ethnicity.
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