Disease Index Endocrine Diseases

Type 2 diabetes

Type 2 diabetes is the commonest type of diabetes, affecting almost 200 million people worldwide.Type 2 diabetes is a heterogeneous disorder that results from an interaction between a genetic predisposition and environment factors and lead to the combination of insulin deficiency and insulin resistance.

Introduction

Type 2 diabetes is the commonest type of diabetes, affecting almost 200 million people worldwide. In this article we will examine what causes type 2diabetes and why it is increasing at such an alarming rate. Although insulin can be used to treat type 2 diabetes, most patients are treated with diet alone or diet and oral hypoglycemic drugs.

What is type 2 diabetes?

Type 2 diabetes is a heterogeneous disorder that results from an interaction between a genetic predisposition and environment factors and lead to the combination of insulin deficiency and insulin resistance.

Cause of Diabetes

When our bodies are humming along smoothly, we rarely think about all the complex processes that are going on. But when we don’t feel well and we’re unable to perform our usual activities, we want to know what’s causing the problem and how it can be fixed.

Type 2 Diabetes

Type 2 diabetes is caused by a combination of insulin resistance (reduced sensitivity of the body’s tissues, primarily the liver and muscles, to the action of insulin) and inadequate amounts of insulin. If you have insulin resistance, your pancreas must increase its production of insulin, because your body needs more insulin to accomplish the job of moving glucose into your cells. For example, the pancreas of a healthy person might produce 30 units of insulin a day. If that person develops insulin resistance, more insulin is required, because those same 30 units will no longer be sufficient to clear glucose from the bloodstream. Eventually, the pancreas can no longer keep up with the increasing demand for extra insulin, and glucose accumulates in the bloodstream. At that point, the person has type 2 diabetes.

Obesity is the major contributing factor to insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes. That’s why obese people who have early signs of type 2 diabetes are told by their doctors to make dietary changes, lose weight, and exercise. If these lifestyle measures are not sufficient to control their blood glucose, the next step is oral diabetes medications. About 40% of people with type 2 diabetes eventually need insulin injection to keep their blood glucose at a safe level.

Risk increases with

  • Family history of diabetes.
  • Gestational diabetes (diabetes in pregnancy).
  • Overweight (more so if fat is in the abdomen).
  • High blood pressure; high cholesterol or high triglycerides.
  • Sedentary lifestyle (lack of physical activity).
  • Metabolic syndrome (a set of conditions).
  • African Americans, Native Americans, Hispanic Americans, Pacific Islanders, and Asian American.

Pathogenesis of type 2 diabetes

Eighty percent of patients with diabetes mellitus suffer from type 2 diabetes. The clinical forms of this disorder are heterogeneous. The primary underlying lesion in insulin resistance, caused by a “postreceptor defect” that has not yet been fully characterized (presumably affecting intracellular glucose transport, insulin signal transduction, etc.) in addition to peripheral insulin resistance, patients with type 2 diabetes also have a diminished or absent first phase of insulin secretion, which can often be detected years before diabetes becomes clinically overt.

Clinical Features of type 2 diabetes

Type 2 diabetes tends to cluster in families. Increasing age, weight gain, and sedentary lifestyle all tend to increase insulin resistance and to promote the onset of disease in predisposed persons. In addition to polyuria and polydipsia, further manifestations may include fatigue, recurrent skin infections, vulvar pruritus, balanitis, furunculosis, etc.

The clinical features, however, are unreliable clues, as more than 50% of patients are asymptomatic at the time of diagnosis. The disease is often diagnosed on the basis of diabetic complication such as neuropathy, nephropathy, and coronary heart disease.

In most cases, type 2 diabetes is associated with central obesity, arterial hypertensions, and dyslipidemia (elevated triglyceride concentrations and low HDL cholesterol). Type 2 diabetes is metabolic syndrome (insulin resistance syndrome) that confers an elevated risk of cardiovascular disease.    

Diagnosis of type 2 diabetes

  • Your health care provider will do a physical exam and ask questions about your symptoms.
  • Medical tests include blood glucose and urine studies. A glucose tolerance test may be done. A hemoglobin A1C (HbA1c) may be done as a follow-up. This test measures average blood glucose levels for the past 2 to 3 months.

How to Treat

General Measures

  • Learn the techniques of self-monitoring of blood sugar and monitor regularly. Know the symptoms of high and low blood glucose levels and what to do. Keep glucose tablets handy.
  • Get regular foot care and regular eye exams.
  • Stop smoking. Find a way to quit that works.
  • Wear a medical alert type bracelet or neck tag to show you have diabetes and drugs you take.
  • Get medical care for any infection.

Medication for type 2 diabetes

  • One or more types of oral anti-diabetic drugs may be prescribed. Your health care provider will discuss the options, the benefits, and the risks with your. Insulin may be prescribed if oral drugs are not effective.
  • Aspirin (for adults), cholesterol -lowering drugs, and drugs for high blood pressure may also be prescribed.

Homeopathic treatment of type 2 diabetes – Homeopathy is one of the most popular holistic systems of medicine. The selection of remedy is based upon the theory of individualization and symptoms similarity by using holistic approach. This is the only way through which a state of complete health can be regained by removing all the sign and symptoms from which the patient is suffering. The aim of homeopathy is not only to treat type 2 diabetes but to address its underlying cause and individual susceptibility. As far as therapeutic medication is concerned, several remedies are available to cure type 2 diabetes symptoms that can be selected on the basis of cause, sensations and modalities of the complaints.  For individualized remedy selection and treatment, the patient should consult a qualified homeopathic doctor in person. There are following remedies which are helpful in the treatment of type 2 diabetes symptoms:

Merc  V, Sulphur, Cantharis, Calcaria Carb, Baryta Carb, Causticum, Rhus Tox, Phosphoric Acid, Alumina, Aconite, Sarsaparilla, Natrum Carb, Sepia, Apis Mel, Natrum mur and many other medicines.

Reference

Richard l. G. Holt, Neil A. Hanley, Charles Groves Darville Brook- Essential endocrinology and diabetes; 2007; 216

Christopher D. Saudek, Simeon Margolis -Diabetes 2007; 2007; 5-6

H. Winter Griffith, Stephen Moore, KENNETH YODER-Complete Guide to Symptoms, illness & Surgery; 2006; 260

Walter Siegnethaler- Differential diagnosis in internal medicine: from symptom to diagnosis; 2007; 39

About the author

Ashish Sharma

Ashish Sharma

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2 Comments

  • This article is very informative and useful for both a person suffering with diabetes and a doctor treating such patients.Diabetes is today a vastly distributed diasease,latest informations and precautions may becomee very useful for suffering humanity.

  • This article includes very useful informations about type 2 diabetes. Many persons suffering with DM can identify the stage of their disease and can take precations well so that disease can not harm them very much. They can know how they live with type 2 diabetes.