Diabetes Health Problems
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Health Problems of Diabetes

Although there is no cure for diabetes mellitus, the condition can be successfully treated and managed without the serious adverse health effects experienced by diabetics in earlier years. However, in practice, diabetics have an increased risk of short-term health problems such as hyperglycemia, hypoglycemia and ketoacidosis, as well as long-term health problems, and their diabetic condition requires careful management in order to maintain optimal health.

Diabetes As a Cause of Death

Diabetes was listed as an underlying or contributing cause of death on approximately 200,000 death certificates in 1999. This makes diabetes the sixth leading cause of death in America. In general terms, the risk for death among diabetics is about twice that of people without diabetes. The younger the diabetes patient, the greater the future health risk.

Risk of Heart Disease For Diabetics

Coronary heart disease is the leading cause of diabetes-related deaths. Adults with diabetes have heart disease death rates about 2-4 times higher than adults without diabetes.

Risk of Stroke For Diabetics

The risk for stroke is 2 to 4 times higher among people with diabetes.

Risk of High Blood Pressure For Diabetics

About 73 percent of adults with diabetes have blood pressure greater than or equal to 130/80 mm Hg or use prescription medications for hypertension.

Risk of Kidney Disease For Diabetics

Diabetes is the leading cause of treated end-stage renal disease, accounting for 43 percent of new cases. In 1999, 38,160 people with diabetes began treatment for end-stage renal disease. In 1999, a total of 114,478 people with diabetes underwent dialysis or kidney transplantation.

Risk of Blindness For Diabetics

Diabetes is the leading cause of new cases of blindness among adults 20 to 74 years old.
Diabetic retinopathy causes from 12,000 to 24,000 new cases of blindness each year.

Risk of Amputations For Diabetics

More than 60 percent of nontraumatic lower-limb amputations in the United States occur among people with diabetes. From 1997 to 1999, about 82,000 nontraumatic lower-limb amputations were performed each year among people with diabetes.

Risk of Dental Disease For Diabetics

Periodontal or gum diseases are more common among people with diabetes than among people without diabetes. Among young adults, those with diabetes are often at twice the risk of those without diabetes. Almost one third of people with diabetes have severe periodontal diseases with loss of attachment of the gums to the teeth measuring 5 millimeters or more.

Health Problems During Pregnancy Caused By Diabetes

Poorly controlled diabetes before conception and during the first trimester of pregnancy can cause major birth defects in 5 to 10 percent of pregnancies and spontaneous abortions in 15 to 20 percent of pregnancies. Poorly controlled diabetes during the second and third trimesters of pregnancy can result in excessively large babies, posing a risk to the mother and the child.

Other Health Problems For Diabetics

Uncontrolled diabetes often leads to biochemical imbalances that can cause acute life-threatening events, such as diabetic ketoacidosis and hyperosmolar syndrome. People with diabetes are more susceptible to many other illnesses and, once they develop these diseases, often have a worse prognosis than people without diabetes. For example, they are more likely to die with pneumonia or influenza than people who do not have diabetes.

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Carbs-Information.com provides general information about the glycemic index (GI), glycemic load (GL), low GI diets, GI values for all food groups, health problems of high blood glucose including metabolic disorders such as pre-diabetes, impaired glucose tolerance, insulin resistance, hyperinsulinism as well as type 1 and type 2 diabetes. But no information is intended as a substitute for medical advice. Copyright 2003-2021.