Diabetes mellitus —often simply referred to as diabetes—is a condition in which a person has a high blood sugar (glucose) level as a result of the body either not producingenough insulin, or because body cells do not properly respond to the insulin that is produced. Insulin is a hormone produced in the pancreas which enables body cells to absorb glucose, to turn intoenergy. If the body cells do not absorb the glucose, the glucose accumulates in the blood (hyperglycemia), leading to various potential medical complications.
There are many types of diabetes, the mostcommon of which are:
• Type 1 diabetes: results from the body's failure to produce insulin, and presently requires the person to inject insulin.
• Type 2 diabetes: results from insulinresistance, a condition in which cells fail to use insulin properly, sometimes combined with an absolute insulin deficiency.
• Gestational diabetes: is when pregnant women, who have never had diabetesbefore, have a high blood glucose level during pregnancy. It may precede development of type 2 DM.
Other forms of diabetes mellitus include congenital diabetes, which is due to genetic defects ofinsulin secretion, cystic fibrosis-related diabetes, steroid diabetes induced by high doses of glucocorticoids, and several forms of monogenic diabetes.
All forms of diabetes have been treatable sinceinsulin became medically available in 1921, but a cure is difficult. Pancreas transplants have been tried with limited success in type 1 DM; gastric bypass surgery has been successful in many withmorbid obesity and type 2 DM; and gestational diabetes usually resolves after delivery. Diabetes without proper treatments can cause many complications. Acute complications include hypoglycemia, diabeticketoacidosis, or nonketotic hyperosmolar coma. Serious long-term complications include cardiovascular disease, chronic renal failure, retinal damage. Adequate treatment of diabetes is thus...