Diabetes mellitus being major cause of deaths, it becomes very much important to understand what is diabetes mellitus and changes which occur in the body. Understanding the changes occurring helps you manage diabetes mellitus better. India today leads the world with largest number of people with Diabetes in any given country. Diabetes mellitus is a group of metabolic diseases characterized by high blood glucose levels, disturbances of carbohydrate, fat and protein metabolism resulting from defects in insulin secretion, or action, or both.
Diabetes mellitus, commonly referred to as diabetes was first identified as a disease in the ancient world and association with ‘sweet urine’, and excessive muscle loss. Elevated levels of blood glucose into urine, hence term sweet urine. High blood glucose levels are usually termed as Hyperglycemia. This occurs when there is no sufficient insulin to achieve normoglycaemia. Exposure to hyperglycemia over time may slowly damage tissues in organs throughout the body.
Here, either the body completely fails to produce insulin as in Type 1 Diabetes or there is insulin production but the amount produced is less than what is required or it is working inefficiently as seen in Type 2 Diabetes.
|Tests||NORMAL (mg/dl)||DIABETES (mg/dl)|
|2 hr Post meal||<140||>200|
Type 1 Diabetes:
Type 1 diabetes accounts for only 5-10% of those with diabetes. It was also known as Insulin Dependent Diabetes Mellitus (IDDM). In type 1 DM, there is insufficient production of insulin (either absolute or relative to the body’s needs).
Type 1 diabetes refers to cell-mediated autoimmune destruction of pancreatic beta islet cells, which leads to absolute insulin deficiency. The autoimmune origin of type 1 diabetes is the most common.
Type 2 Diabetes:
It was also referred to as Non-Insulin Dependent Diabetes (NIDDM) or adult- onset diabetes. This is the common type seen. This form of Diabetes accounts for about 90-95% of those with Diabetes.
Type 2 Diabetes is characterized by varying degrees of insulin resistance and insulin deficiency. It is though that earliest defect in the pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes is impaired insulin action or insulin resistance. Insulin resistance leads to certain physiological responses. Therefore, for type 2 diabetes to develop, two defects are necessary: insulin resistance and insulin deficiency relative to the resistance.
Other specific types of Diabetes include:
- Gestational Diabetes
- Maturity Onset Diabetes of the Young (MODY)
- Latent autoimmune diabetes in adults (LADA)
There are probably several causes of Diabetes. Some of the most common causes are:
- Infection or severe illness
- During steroid use
The symptoms of untreated diabetes are related to elevated blood glucose levels, and loss of glucose in the urine. People with type 1 diabetes usually develop symptoms over a relatively short period of time. Symptoms in people with type 2 diabetes usually develop more gradually and are often not as noticeable as in type 1. Type 2diabetes may be diagnosed by change through routine medical check-ups. Symptoms vary from person to person, but most common symptoms include:
- Increased Urination( Polyuria)
- Increased Appetite (Polyphagia)
- Increased Thirst (Polydipsia)
- Visible weight loss
- Blurred Vision
- Recurrent skin infections
- Vaginal Infections
- Slow wound healing
Thus understanding diabetes in better manner and knowing the changes which occur makes it easy to manage.