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Diabetes Mellitus

What is diabetes mellitus?

Diabetes mellitus is a condition characterized by a combination of defects in the ability of cells at the tail end of the pancreas(beta-cells) to produce appropriate amounts of insulin, and/or the ability of the insulin that is produced to help the cells of the body to utilize the blood glucose, resulting in high levels of blood sugar in the body. The resulting high blood glucose levels, if not treated appropriately can result in both short- and long-term complications of diabetes mellitus affecting all parts of the body.

Most patients with diabetes mellitus do not have symptoms for a long time. In most patients, the symptoms start occurring when the blood sugars are higher than 180 mg/dl.

The symptoms of diabetes mellitus are:

  • Increased thirst
  • Blurry vision
  • Weight loss
  • Fatigue
  • Tingling and/or numbness in any part of the body especially in the extremities- hands and feet
  • Increased urine output especially at night

Dr Thomas will do a comprehensive medical evaluation and do the appropriate blood tests and any other relevant investigations to diagnose diabetes mellitus and screen you for any complications of diabetes mellitus.  Typically, a diagnosis of diabetes is made if your fasting blood glucose levels is more than 126 mg/dl or a random blood glucose is greater than or equal to 200 mg/dl or Hemoglobin A1c is 6.5% or higher.

There are 4 main categories of diabetes mellitus:

  • Type 1 diabetes
  • Type 2 diabetes
  • Gestational diabetes
  • Specific types of diabetes mellitus
    • Genetic types of beta cell function and insulin action
    • Diseases of exocrine pancreas
    • Endocrine disorders (Cushing’s syndrome, Acromegaly, Pheochromocytoma etc.)
    • Drug-induced.
    • Infections
    • Immune-mediated

All the above conditions need special investigations and individual treatment plans.

At a Glance

Dr. Reena Thomas, MD

  • Dual American board-certified endocrinologist
  • Author of numerous academic and clinic research
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