Diabetes affects Approx 750,000 people in the UK, and raising year on year. There are two types of Diabetes Type 1 this occurs when the pancreas produces no insulin at all, the bodies immune system attacks the beta cells and blood sugar is left to raise, damaging internal organs. Type 1 Diabetes is also known as insulin dependent diabetes mellitus (IDDM).
Type 2 Diabetes is the acquired form of Diabetes a combination of hereditary factors and more commonly due to obesity and our increasingly sedentary lifestyles. Type 2 Diabetes is firstly controlled by diet and exercise attempting to reduce the glucose levels in the blood, if diet and excercise is unsuccesful in treating type 2 diabetes, then medication is prescribed such as metformin. Type 2 diabetes is also known as Non insulin dependent diabetes mellitus (NIDDM).
HbA1c is a measurement of the blood glucose levels over the last 3months. In both cases blood sugar levels should be below 48mmol which equates to 6.5% in the UK, over this level then complications can occur. these include.
Vascular Increase risk of atherosclerosis (narrowing) of the arteries and loss of elasticity in the arteries. This increases the risk of strokes. oxygen carrying capacity of the blood is reduced, and white blood cells are less effective in fighting infections.
Neurological and nerve damage, especially the peripheral nerves in the feet and hands. sensory and motor nerves are damaged in the foot and leg increasing the risk of ulcerations the damage to the nerves can also cause dry skin.
Renal Disease increasing odema (swelling). Risk of gangrene.
Wound healing is also impaired.
NICE clinical guidelines recommend that diabetics have annual checks of the eyes, feet both neurological and vascular testing.
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