What is diabetes? 

 

A group of diseases that result in too much sugar in the blood (high blood glucose). Most of the food we eat is turned into glucose, or sugar, for our bodies to use for energy. The pancreas, an organ that lies near the stomach, makes a hormone called insulin to help glucose get into the cells of our bodies. When you have diabetes, your body either doesn’t make enough insulin or can’t use its own insulin as well as it should.

Most common types

Type 2 diabetes

A chronic condition that affects the way the body processes blood sugar (glucose). Type 2 diabetes may account for about 90 percent to 95 percent of all diagnosed cases of diabetes. Risk factors for Type 2 diabetes include older age, obesity, family history of diabetes, prior history of gestational diabetes, impaired glucose tolerance, physical inactivity, and race/ethnicity.

Treatment for Type 2 diabetes

Treatment typically includes diet control, exercise, home blood glucose testing, and in some cases, oral medication and/or insulin. Approximately 40 percent of people with type 2 diabetes require insulin injections.

Type 1 diabetes

A chronic condition in which the pancreas produces little or no insulin. Risk factors are less well defined for Type 1 diabetes than for Type 2 diabetes, but autoimmune, genetic, and environmental factors are involved in the development of this type of diabetes.

Treatment for Type 1 diabetes

Patients with type 1 diabetes will need to take insulin injections for the rest of their life. They must also ensure proper blood-glucose levels by carrying out regular blood tests and following a special diet.

Prediabetes

A condition in which blood sugar is high, but not high enough to be type 2 diabetes. The cells in the body are becoming resistant to insulin. Studies have indicated that even at the prediabetes stage, some damage to the circulatory system and the heart may already have occurred.

Gestational diabetes

A form of high blood sugar affecting pregnant women. Undiagnosed or uncontrolled gestational diabetes can raise the risk of complications during childbirth.

 Other types of Diabetes: 

LADA

LADA tends to develop more slowly than type 1 diabetes in childhood and, because LADA can sometimes appear similar to type 2 diabetes, doctors may mistakenly diagnose LADA as type 2 diabetes. It shows many of the genetic, immune, and metabolic features of Type 1 diabetes, and carries a high risk of progression to insulin dependency. This form of the condition is known as ‘latent autoimmune diabetes in adults’ (LADA). It is found in about 10% of initially non-insulin-requiring people with diabetes and is therefore probably more prevalent than Type 1 diabetes.

MODY

MODY is a rare form of diabetes which is different from both Type 1 and Type 2 diabetes and runs strongly in families. MODY is caused by a mutation (or change) in a single gene. If a parent has this gene mutation, any child they have, has a 50% chance of inheriting it from them. If a child does inherit the mutation they will generally go on to develop MODY before they’re 25, whatever their weight, lifestyle, ethnic group, etc.

Monogenic diabetes

Monogenic diabetes is a rare type of diabetes that’s caused by a single gene mutation.

Chronic Pancreatitis-associated Diabetes

Chronic pancreatitis-associated diabetes is caused by chronic pancreatitis, a prolonged inflammation of the pancreas, which causes extensive damage to exocrine tissue.

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