Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Diabetes Overview

What is diabetes?
A person with diabetes has a chronic disease in which the body is unable to regulate blood sugar properly. As a result, blood sugar levels become abnormally high. Blood sugar, or glucose, is an important source of energy for all cells in the body. Insulin is a hormone made by the pancreas. Insulin regulates the level of glucose in the bloodstream. There are two main types of diabetes: type 1 diabetes, which begins in childhood, and type 2 diabetes, which affects middle-aged adults the most.

What are the symptoms of diabetes?
Symptoms of diabetes include blurred vision, dizziness, excessive fatigue, excessive thirst, faintness, frequent urination, headaches, irritability, muscle cramps, nausea, and weight loss.

How does the doctor treat diabetes?
Treatment of diabetes depends on the type. Treatment may include some combination of a diabetes diet, weight reduction, exercise plan, insulin, and oral medications for diabetes.

Continue to Diabetes Incidence

Last Updated: Feb 3, 2011 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Diabetes References
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  2. Monnier L, Benichou M, Charra-Ebrard S, Boegner C, Colette C. An overview of the rationale for pharmacological strategies in type 2 diabetes: from the evidence to new perspectives. Diabetes Metab. 2005 Apr;31(2):101-9. [15959415]
  3. Olson DE, Norris SL. Diabetes in older adults. Overview of AGS guidelines for the treatment of diabetes mellitus in geriatric populations. Geriatrics. 2004 Apr;59(4):18-24. [15086070]
  4. Ratner RE. Type 2 diabetes mellitus: the grand overview. Diabet Med. 1998;15 Suppl 4:S4-7. [9868984]
  5. Ulbrecht JS, Cavanagh PR, Caputo GM. Foot problems in diabetes: an overview. Clin Infect Dis. 2004 Aug 1;39 Suppl 2:S73-82. [15306983]
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