- The World Diabetes Day is celebrated on November 14th every year. It was established by the International Diabetes Federation and the World Health Organization in 1991.
- The event stresses on the need for screening for diabetes as well as complications caused by diabetes.
Diabetes is now a common condition but here are some facts about diabetes that could leave you baffled:
- Diabetes now affects one out of every eleven adults. Yet, since especially type 2 diabetes may not cause obvious symptoms, one out of every two individuals do not know that they suffer from diabetes. The condition will be more common i.e. 1 out of every 10 adults will suffer from diabetes by the year 2040, which is not very far away.
- Diabetes is thought by some to be a condition that affects the affluent. However, statistics reveal that around three-fourths of those affected by diabetes live in the low-and-middle-income groups. The number of people with diabetes in Africa is likely to double by the year 2040. Such a situation could be particularly problematic since many individuals may not have access to adequate healthcare facilities.
- Diabetes affects almost every vital organ of the body and causes complications that can disable the patient and can even result in death. Globally, one person dies due to diabetes every six seconds. Complications associated with diabetes include heart diseases like heart attack, heart failure and cardiomyopathy, blindness due to retinopathy, cataract or glaucoma, kidney failure, and the need for lower-limb amputation due to gangrene.
- Modern sedentary lifestyles contribute to a significant extent to the development of diabetes. A change to a healthier lifestyle with adequate diet control and regular exercise can protect several individuals with diabetes and its complications.
‘Diabetes comes stealthily and causes widespread damage.’
AdvertisementThe theme of the World Diabetes Day 2016 is 'Eyes on Diabetes' with key messages that stress on screening for diabetes and diabetes complications.
Screening means conducting tests to detect a disease even before symptoms appear. Screening helps in the early diagnosis of diabetes so that the appropriate treatment can be instated at an early date. Diabetes under control is usually associated with lesser complications. People at a higher risk for diabetes like those with a family history should particularly undergo screening.
Tests used to screen for diabetes include the following:
- Measurements of fasting or random blood glucose levels.
- Measurement of glycated hemoglobin (HbA1C) levels. This blood test gives an estimate of the control of blood glucose levels in the previous three months.
- Regular examination by your treating doctor. Your blood pressure should be monitored to detect hypertension at the earliest. Weight should be checked and maintained to prevent obesity. Your feet should be regularly checked for blisters or small wounds.
- Regular dilated eye examinations by an eye specialist to detect early changes associated with eye diseases like cataract, glaucoma and diabetic retinopathy.
- Measurements of fasting, postprandial and random blood glucose levels. If you need to do these frequently, you could do it yourself using a glucometer at home.
- Measurement of glycated hemoglobin levels
- Estimation of cholesterol and triglyceride levels in the blood through blood tests. These should be maintained at a normal level
- Blood tests for kidney function and urine examination for the presence of protein to detect kidney disease early
- World Diabetes Day 2016 - (http://www.idf.org/wdd-index/)
- What Is Diabetic Heart Disease? - (https:www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/dhd)
- Facts About Diabetic Eye Disease - (https:nei.nih.gov/health/diabetic/retinopathy)
- Preventing Diabetes Problems - (https:www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/diabetes/preventing-diabetes-problems)
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