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What is Diabetes?

Diabetes is a group of diseases marked by high levels of blood glucose resulting from defects in insulin production, insulin action, or both. Diabetes can lead to serious complications and premature death, but people with diabetes can take steps to control the disease and lower the risk of complications.

Types of Diabetes

Type 1 Diabetes
Type 1 diabetes was previously called insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM) or juvenile-onset diabetes. Type 1 diabetes develops when the body's immune system destroys pancreatic beta cells, the only cells in the body that make the hormone insulin that regulates blood glucose. To survive, people with type 1 diabetes must have insulin delivered by injection or a pump. This form of diabetes usually strikes children and young adults, although disease onset can occur at any age. Type 1 diabetes accounts for 5% to 10% of all diagnosed cases of diabetes. Risk factors for type 1 diabetes may be autoimmune, genetic, or environmental. There is no known way to prevent type 1 diabetes.

Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 diabetes was previously called non insulin-dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM) or adult-onset diabetes. Type 2 diabetes accounts for about 90% to 95% of all diagnosed cases of diabetes. It usually begins as insulin resistance, a disorder in which the cells do not use insulin properly. As the need for insulin rises, the pancreas gradually loses its ability to produce it. Type 2 diabetes is associated with older age, obesity, family history of diabetes, history of gestational diabetes, impaired glucose metabolism, physical inactivity, and race/ethnicity. Clinically-based reports and regional studies suggest that type 2 diabetes in children and adolescents, although still rare, is being diagnosed more frequently.

Gestational diabetes
Gestational diabetes is a form of glucose intolerance diagnosed in some women during pregnancy. It is more common among obese women and women with a family history of diabetes. During pregnancy, gestational diabetes requires treatment to normalize maternal blood glucose levels to avoid complications in the infant. After pregnancy, 5% to 10% of women with gestational diabetes are found to have type 2 diabetes. Women who have had gestational diabetes have a 20% to 50% chance of developing diabetes in the next 5 10 years.

Prediabetes or Insulin Resistance
Prediabetes is a condition that raises the risk of developing type 2 diabetes, heart disease, and stroke. People with prediabetes have blood glucose levels higher than normal but not high enough to be classified as diabetes. Progression to diabetes among those with prediabetes is not inevitable. Studies have shown that people with prediabetes who lose weight and increase their physical activity can prevent or delay diabetes and even return their blood glucose levels to normal.

For more information, contact the Diabetes Center at 712-794-5549.

 
St. Anthony Regional Hospital & Nursing Home
311 S. Clark
Carroll, IA 51401